In many coastal communities, climate change and rising sea levels will result in a binary decision point - - defend or retreat. Keep in mind retreat or abandonment and moving to higher ground has a cost outlined below:
- Accelerated amortization/write-off of structures and infrastructure.
- Write-off of the underlying real estate, something that is rarely done on balance sheets now.
- Significantly increased insurance costs.
- A dwindling tax base.
- As things deteriorate, the increasing cost of defensive measures such as seawalls, and then the costs of remediation and repair as things get destroyed, prior to the decision to abandon.
- The cost of relocating, not just individual buildings and infrastructure, but entire communities.