Budget Bill a Start in Climate Fight, Insurance Experts Say
Proposals to funnel billions of dollars to disadvantaged communities to prepare for extreme weather form a key part of the $430 billion budget bill approved by U.S. lawmakers, but insurance experts said the money would only be a start in preventing worsening losses.
Even as federal investments in the climate reach historic highs with the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, ensuring that the most vulnerable communities are able to access those funds will be of utmost importance, experts say. Among other provisions, the climate and health legislation would allow almost $1.9 billion in grants to help poorer communities identify and manage heat and stormwater risks, per the bill, which now heads to President Joe Biden for final approval.
Cooling centers could also be among the kind of community build-out projects contemplated by the bill, said Alan Rubin, a member of Blank Rome’s Severe Weather Emergency Recovery Team. Shelters could also be repurposed as food and water distribution centers and provide a community meeting place following storms, he said.
“Whether it’s a hurricane, or a flood, or an earthquake or an ice storm—whatever the disaster is, we do not have enough shelters,” Rubin told Law360. “It’s a problem.”
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“Budget Bill a Start in Climate Fight, Insurance Experts Say,” by Eli Flesch. was published in Law360 on August 12, 2022.