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THE CRITICAL ROLE OF MARKETS IN CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION

  • Author(s): Anderson, Sarah E
  • Anderson, Terry L
  • Hill, Alice C
  • Kahn, Matthew E
  • Kunreuther, Howard
  • Libecap, Gary D
  • Mantripragada, Hari
  • Merel, Pierre
  • Plantinga, Andrew J
  • Smith, V Kerry
  • et al.

Published Web Location

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3185918
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Abstract

Markets, especially land markets, can facilitate climate change adaptation through price signals. A review of research reveals that urban, coastal, and agricultural land markets provide effective signals of the emerging costs of climate change. These signals encourage adjustments by both private owners and policy officials in taking preemptive action to reduce costs. In agriculture, they promote consideration of new cropping and tillage practices, seed types, timing, and location of production. They also stimulate use of new irrigation technologies. In urban areas, they motivate new housing construction, elevation, and location away from harm. They channel more efficient use of water and its application to parks and other green areas to make urban settings more desirable with higher temperatures. Related water markets play a similar role in adjusting water use and reallocation. To be effective, however, markets must reflect multiple traders and prices must be free to adjust. Where these conditions are not met, market signals will be inhibited and market-driven adaptation will be reduced. Because public policy is driven by constituent demands, it may not be a remedy. The evidence of the National Flood Insurance Program and federal wildfire response illustrates how politically difficult it may be to adjust programs to be more adaptive.

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