Home Energy and Environment Should Fossil Fuel Companies Reimburse Taxpayers for Climate-Change-Related Disaster Spending?

Should Fossil Fuel Companies Reimburse Taxpayers for Climate-Change-Related Disaster Spending?

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Cross posted from Scaling Green

According to a new report by the Center for American Progress

…the federal government-which means taxpayers-spent $136 billion total from fiscal year 2011 to fiscal year 2013 on disaster relief. This adds up to an average of nearly $400 per household per year.

Nearly all of this disaster spending was for relief and recovery from these and other smaller natural disasters. Most of these disasters are symptomatic of the man-made climate change resulting from massive amounts of carbon emissions and other pollutants in the atmosphere, which warm the oceans and the Earth. As climate change accelerates, so will federal spending on disaster relief and recovery, which will ultimately be paid for by taxpayers.

The nearly $400 per household spent annually over the past three years could be the beginning of a very costly future as climate-related extreme weather multiplies. This issue brief explores federal spending on disaster relief and offers up recommendations for how we can respond to the potential growth in these expenditures.

So, let’s get this story straight. The fossil fuel companies make enormous profits and receive huge taxpayer subsidies. At the same time, they spew enormous amounts of pollution that fuels climate change and intensifies storm severity and damage. Then, we the taxpayers get to shell out of our wallets to clean up the disasters the fossil fuel companies helped create. Great deal, huh? No, didn’t think so. Instead, how about the fossil fuel companies reimburse taxpayers some or all of the $136 billion spent between 2011 and 2013 on disaster relief? And, going forward, how about the fossil fuel companies pay for the damages their pollution contributes to, especially as long as they continue to wallow at the taxpayer-funded government trough. Deal?