During our two weeks in Ft. Lauderdale we learned that a beachfront house costs between $3 and $8 million. Most of these are approximately the same height above sea level as a crushproof cigarette pack. If the seas are rising up to swallow Florida, as the climate change doomsayers predict is imminent, why are these houses still worth so much? Here are some possible theories…
- markets don’t believe that a serious sea level rise will happen for at least 50 years
- Federal flood insurance keeps the market buoyant, so to speak (subsidized by taxpayers in the Midwest, of course!)
- Florida beachfront house buyers are impulsive live-for-today types; anything that happens 10 or 15 years from now is irrelevant to them
Readers: How to explain the apparent paradox that (a) everyone intelligent supposedly believes that climate change will result in fairly imminent and fairly dramatic sea level rise, and (b) houses at sea level at crazy expensive?