South Florida Town Starts Resilience Fund to Adapt to Climate Change

January 10, 2020

A small ocean-side town in South Florida has created a “resilience fund” that will be used to help residents adapt to climate change in a first-of-its-kind effort.

The town of Surfside’s fund will be used for buyouts of residents’ homes, among other projects. It also will give residents an assessment of the risks of living where they are. So far, the quarter million dollars in it has been funded by developers and the town.

Town officials said the fund will help residents deal with the uncertainty of living in a place where the sea is expected to rise two feet by 2060.

John Macomber, a professor at the Harvard Business School who specializes in resilience investment, told the Miami Herald that he hasn’t heard of any other such fund in a U.S. city.

“In the big picture, something is going to deliver this bad news to the city eventually,” he said. “Probably it’s thoughtful to say to someone you have value now and you should capture that value.”

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