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Kyle A. Poyar 2008 Ernest F. Hollings Scholar Candidate for A.B. in Environmental Studies Presentation to CES: April 30, 2010 Contact:

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Presentation on theme: "Kyle A. Poyar 2008 Ernest F. Hollings Scholar Candidate for A.B. in Environmental Studies Presentation to CES: April 30, 2010 Contact:"— Presentation transcript:

1 Kyle A. Poyar 2008 Ernest F. Hollings Scholar Candidate for A.B. in Environmental Studies Presentation to CES: April 30, 2010 Contact: // assessing the economic efficiency of climate adaptation in Rhode Island //

2 Climate Change in the U.S. … unequivocal… … occurring now… - U.S. Global Change Research Program (2009)

3 Adaptation to Climate Change

4 Moving Beyond No Regrets Evaluation Criterion Working DefinitionExample No regretsProvides benefits with or without climate change (win-win) Restrict new development in areas already vulnerable to flooding EquityFair distribution of benefits (or losses) Locate cooling/relief centers near low-income populations Economic efficiency Fiscal benefits exceed costs Subsidize air-conditioning for the low-income elderly Adapted from Poyar and Beller-Simms, 2009.

5 My Project How could one apply economic methods to climate change adaptation policy? How much will climate change-induced heat waves and hurricanes cost RI in $ terms? When would adaptation be cost-effective?

6 Key Considerations Net Present Value Discount Rate 3% Value of Human Life $6.9 million per life

7 Heat Waves, Climate Change, and Human Health Urban Heat Island Effect 2003 European Heat Wave Kills 25,000

8 Heat Deaths in Rhode Island from Emissions Scenario Heat Deaths Expected Annual Heat Deaths Extra Deaths from Climate Change High Emissions3,053482,232 Low Emissions2,276361,454

9 Costs of Extreme Heat from Emissions Scenario Cost (3% D.R.) Cost (1.4% D.R.) Cost (4.3% D.R.) High Emissions$4.75 Billion$8.75 Billion$3.2 Billion Low Emissions$3.1 Billion$5.7 Billion$2.1 Billion

10 Hurricanes and R.I. New England Hurricane of 1938

11 Emissions ScenarioAverage Annual CostCost (% of 2007 RI GDP) High Emissions$312 Million0.66% Low Emissions$252 Million0.54%

12 Hurricanes and Economic Risk

13 Adaptation Options Heat Waves Air-Conditioning Warning and Alert Systems Urban Forestry Hurricanes Relocation Strengthen buildings Hurricane barriers Preparedness, Evacuation

14 Cost-Benefit of Adaptation Policies Net Present Value of AdaptationLow EmissionsHigh Emissions Subsidize Air-Conditioners (Elderly)$75.1 million$95.5 million Subsidize Air-Conditioners (All Ages)$128.4 million$176.8 million Heat Warning and Alert System$610 million$791 million Rebuild Fox Pt. Hurricane Barrier$1,470 million$1,750 million

15 Implementing Climate Adaptation

16 Adaptation Options Heat Waves Air-Conditioning Warning and Alert Systems Urban Forestry Hurricanes Relocation Strengthen buildings Hurricane barriers Preparedness, Evacuation

17 The Case for Urban Forestry

18

19 Federal Funding YearsValue of Emissions Permits (EPA) Percentage of Funds for U.S. Adaptation Annual Funding for U.S. Adaptation $60 billion2%$1.2 billion $113 billion4%$4.5 billion > $113 billion8%> $9 billion

20 Climate Risk Reduction Act

21 Conclusions Adaptation to heat waves and hurricanes can be justified on cost-effectiveness grounds Cost-benefit analyses can support projects with substantial benefits to vulnerable populations Rhode Island should start taking bold adaptation action today

22 THANK YOU! J. Timmons Roberts, Brown University Sri Nagavarapu, Brown University Nancy Beller-Simms, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Gordon Sparks, University of Saskatchewan Josh Foster, Center for Clean Air Policy Ivo Welch, Brown University Kurt Teichert, Brown University Fellow CES Students and ENV 201 Classmates

23 Discussion What needs to happen (e.g. public awareness) for adaptation to move forward?

24 Discussion To what extent should adaptation be a local, state, versus national issue?

25 Discussion How can Brown students become more engaged in climate adaptation (policy and research)?

26 Discussion Is cost-benefit analysis appropriate for climate change adaptation? What should be the role of equity, legitimacy, and other policy evaluation criteria?


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