Global Warming Tops Post-Katrina Worries

Global Warming Tops Post-Katrina Worries

Anniversary Has Politicians Considering New Policies
August 28, 2006

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Jody Clarke, 202.331.2252


Washington, D.C., August 28, 2006—A year after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast, global warming alarmists are still exploiting the intense hurricane season of 2005 for political purposes. A new study by the Competitive Enterprise Institute explores the relationship between tropical storms and climate change and makes recommendations for what policy makers can do to reduce exposure to such dramatic weather events in the future.


Contrary to some activist rhetoric, the science linking global warming with hurricanes remains a field of active inquiry and dispute. Current research indicates that some storms

may get stronger, but others may get weaker, while the question of whether intense hurricanes have gotten more frequent has received differing answers depending on how far back one cares to look.


“The findings of scientists working with tropical storm data continues to evolve, as does our understanding of how global warming will affect other elements of the climate,” said CEI Senior Fellow and co-author Marlo Lewis. “Given the lack of knowledge about how much storms will actually change in the coming years, it is imperative to direct government funding to the problems we can actually do the most about.”


Diverting precious resources into policies designed to reduce global warming rather than strengthen our resiliency in the face of hurricanes actually harms people in hurricane-prone areas.  Instead, government policies should concentrate on reducing perverse incentives that encourage development in hurricane-prone areas.


“The one thing that is clear about hurricanes and global warming is that the question is largely theoretical and of no help to Americans who live in hurricane-prone areas,” said CEI Senior Fellow Iain Murray. “Congress and the states need to think hard about whether their policies have brought misery to those people and reform them for the better.”