Governor Hochul declared this week Flood Safety Awareness Week, with a campaign to educate New Yorkers about flood dangers and preparing for emergencies.
But, with floods increasing because of climate change, she did "not" say who would be on the hook for the rising costs. Right now, it’s probably coming out of 'your' pocket.
But Blair Horner of the New York Public Interest Research Group says make the climate polluters pay!
In my discussion with him earlier tonight, Horner pointed to a bill passed by the state senate called the Climate Change Superfund Act that is designed to claw back some of big oil's profits to cover the cost of repairing the damage done by climate change.
It would force wealthy fossil fuel companies to give the state $3 billion every year for 25 years to pay for climate damages and infrastructure.
Horner says the Saudi oil company Aramco hit $160 billion in profits last year and western oil companies took in $300 billion, so big oil can afford it.
And state taxpayers--who otherwise would get stuck with the cost--cannot afford it.
“The state comptroller has done an estimate. $40 billion to deal with rising infrastructure costs in New York state you add to that climate change more intense storms, rising sea level and you add another $100 billion to cost for New York state. It’s 10s of billions of dollars and the money has to come from somewhere. Why not the oil companies that are making record profits?”
Horner also added that, although the federal government is kicking in money to states through bills passed last year, the state has to come up with its share.
Just to give you an idea of the expense of this--the Army Corps of Engineers estimates it costs $52 billion just to protect New York Harbor. If the feds pick up 2/3rds, New York has to come up with the rest!