Market Forces

Harnessing Community Insurance: Lessons from an Innovative Post-Flood Assistance Program in NYC

New York City, along with the rest of the mid-Atlantic, is seeing more extreme rainfall events that overwhelm local infrastructure and lead to localized, but often severe, flooding. These flash floods can impose myriad costs on residents from lost income when businesses are interrupted to higher commuting costs when transit is flooded to the need to muck out homes and repair flood damage. 

When disasters like this strike, access to funds is crucial for covering immediate expenses. Unfortunately, low- and moderate-income (LMI) households often lack the resources to meet these urgent needs, leading to financial distress that can persist long after the disaster has passed. To help address this, a group of partners crossing sectors designed a learning-pilot that consists of an emergency assistance program, financed by a novel parametric insurance product. The project team has recently published a new report summarizing lessons from this effort. Read the report here.

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A Tale of Two Neighborhoods: Detroit Neighborhoods Show Us How Communities Are Affected Differently by Climate Change

As the effects of climate change continue to unfold, all communities across the U.S. will face a wider range of risks. However, some communities will be more affected by those risks due to greater exposure and limited ability to recover from their effects.  

For two neighboring communities in Detroit, the U.S. Climate Vulnerability Index, a new tool developed by Environmental Defense Fund and Texas A&M University in partnership with many others, illustrates how a community’s baseline vulnerability can determine its capacity to address devastating floods, storms, droughts, wildfires and other extreme weather events.  Read More »

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How EDF’s new, groundbreaking EJ mapping tool can drive equitable policies and investment

Last Monday, Environmental Defense Fund and Texas A&M University unveiled the Climate Vulnerability Index (CVI), a robust, data-driven mapping tool built to highlight how drivers of cumulative vulnerability and exposure to climate impacts disadvantage communities across the U.S. Combining 184 sets of data, or “indicators,” to rank more than 70,000 U.S. Census tracts, the CVI offers the most complete look at lived experience down to the neighborhood level.  Read More »

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What can New Zealand’s forestry sector tell us about carbon pricing policy?

New Zealand is currently reconsidering how its forestry sector can contribute to meeting its long-term climate change targets, and what this means for its emissions trading scheme (NZ ETS). A recent paper from researchers at Motu Economic and Public Policy Research and the Environmental Defense Fund sheds light on New Zealand’s innovative treatment of forestry in the NZ ETS, its impacts so far, and questions about where to go from here. Read More »

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To make nature financing more equitable, we must understand how NCS credits are used

This blog was authored by Julia Ilhardt, former High Meadows Fellow, Global Climate Cooperation. It was originally published on EDF’s Climate411 blog channel. Read the full post here

Sun cast over forest, nature

At the end of last year, 196 nations agreed to the historic Global Biodiversity Framework, which includes the goal to protect 30% of land and sea area by 2030. Still, nature is woefully underfinanced, with investments in nature-based solutions needing to double to USD 384 billion per year by 2025, according to UNEP. 

Using crediting to incorporate natural climate solutions (NCS) into carbon markets is one way to generate significant finance for nature while cutting emissions, and it’s gaining public and private sector attention. However, both producing and using credits raises important equity considerations. A new paper from EDF focuses on the issues around use, including how credits may impact the communities surrounding polluting facilities. This blog lays out the framing, key issues, and potential solutions, with more detailed analysis available in the paper. 

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Fueling Research, Advocacy, and Community: Economic Internships at the Environmental Defense Fund

The climate crisis requires not only urgent action, underpinned by a robust framework of proven economic-driven solutions to effectively address its multifaceted challenges. Given the increasing urgency, we need economists at the forefront, conducting rigorous research and informing policy decisions. Recognizing this critical need, the Economics team at EDF is dedicated to nurturing economists who are eager to contribute to the climate fight. 

The Economics team at EDF hosts exceptional interns who make significant contributions to our work. Through internships, we aim to create lasting partnerships with talented individuals who will continue to make a positive impact in the field of economics.  

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