RELEASE: Florida Future Fund Would Help Secure a Safe, Just, and Climate-Ready Future for Florida
Washington, D.C. — The destructive impacts of extreme weather caused by climate change have increasingly threatened the public health and economic well-being of Florida residents, particularly low-income communities and communities of color with the fewest resources to reduce these risks.
A new report from the Center for American Progress and the CLEO Institute urges state leaders to create a Florida Future Fund that will invest in equitable climate infrastructure, clean energy sources, and healthy communities.
Through both public and private investment, the fund would provide municipal, county, and regional funding opportunities for flood protections, resiliency, and clean energy and transportation projects. For every $1 invested in building resilient communities and infrastructure, $6 are saved in future climate change-induced costs, including from economic disruptions, property damage, public health crises, and deaths caused by hurricanes, floods, and other extreme weather disasters, the report says.
“As the climate crisis accelerates, the Florida Future Fund offers a forward-thinking and equitable approach to modernizing the critical infrastructure needed to support the state’s economy, address historic inequities, and help communities better prepare for the future,” said Cathleen Kelly, a senior fellow at CAP and co-author of the report.
“The last decade has shown us that many of the interrelated challenges in Florida, and throughout the nation as a whole, can be tackled by designing and implementing strategies that solve environmental, economic, and social problems while limiting risks,” said Yoca Arditi-Rocha, executive director of the CLEO Institute. “In order to address the inextricably linked issues of economic inequality, environmental disparities, and our changing climate, Florida must heavily invest in equitable climate infrastructure and clean energy to be resilient and climate ready.”
Creating the Florida Future Fund will not only save lives and help Florida avoid the devastating impacts of extreme weather but also support jobs—a $1 billion investment in stronger infrastructure and flood protections alone could create up to 40,000 jobs in the state. Considering the severe inequities of climate impacts and access to clean energy and transportation in Florida, CAP and CLEO recommend that at least 60 percent of investments through the Florida Future Fund go directly to the state’s low-income communities, communities of color, and front-line communities.
Read the report: “Securing a Safe, Just, and Climate-Ready Future for Florida” by Bianca Majumder, Cathleen Kelly, Salome Garcia, Yoca Arditi-Rocha, and Katrina Erwin
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