Congressman Palazzo’s sponsorship of House Concurrent Resolution 89 — “Expressing the sense of Congress that a carbon tax would be detrimental to the United States economy” — last week is a slap in the face to his constituents along the Gulf Coast.
Nobody in America has more to lose from the impacts of global warming than those of us on low-lying coastal lands. These impacts include, most importantly, sea level increase, regular nuisance flooding and higher storm surges. Congressman Palazzo’s district is extremely vulnerable to these impacts.
Scientists now project sea levels will rise six feet by 2100 if high levels of greenhouse gas emissions continue, as Resolution 89 would assure.
According to Climate Central’s “Surging Seas” risk finder, in the three coastal counties, there are 15,334 people and 8,647 homes below six feet in elevation on land connected to the ocean. Some 87,264 acres of land and 393 miles of roads are below six feet, as is $1.4 billion in property.
I suspect that this latter estimate is conservative, given that Chevron-Pasacagoula and the new LNG port in Jackson County are close to sea level. So are the new port and the intermodal rail hub in Gulfport.
Like Florida, the Mississippi Gulf Coast will be ground zero for 21st century impacts of global warming and rising seas. Congressman Palazzo’s indifference is reprehensible.
House Concurrent Resolution 89 might as well be titled: “Expressing the sense of Congress that instead of expecting sane action on climate change, Mississippi’s 4th District should drop dead.”