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More Costly Than Sandy

by Stuart Shapiro

Hurricane Sandy is currently estimated at having cost around $75 billion in damage.  And yet, it may not be the most costly extreme weather event possibly related to climate change in 2012.

While forecasters expect some easing of drought conditions during the next three months in patches around perimeter the drought’s vast core, drought is expected to persist or intensify from the Southwest up into the Rocky Mountain states.

Even in a year that saw hurricane Sandy, the drought could be the headline severe-weather event of 2012.Initial estimates range from $60 billion to $100 billion . . .

As with Hurricane Sandy, it is impossible to say with certainty that the drought was caused by climate change.  But there is a high probability that its severity is climate change related.  And how many billions do we have to spend on dealing with consequences before we decide to spend a smaller number of billions on prevention.

About Stuart Shapiro

Stuart Shapiro Stuart is a professor and the Director of the Public Policy program at the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University. He teaches economics and cost-benefit analysis and studies regulation in the United States at both the federal and state levels. Prior to coming to Rutgers, Stuart worked for five years at the Office of Management and Budget in Washington under Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush.

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