Climate Impacts: Insurers Cherry-Pick Homes, Leave Flooded Ones For Feds

“Taxpayers could be forced to spend billions of dollars to bail out the federal government's flood program as private-sector insurers begin covering homes with little risk of flooding while clustering peril-prone properties in the indebted public program.

An E&E News review of state and federal records shows that insurance companies have escaped paying large claims after major hurricanes, like Michael, and are likely targeting homes that are profitable to insure. It comes as insurers are beginning to offer flood coverage for the first time in decades.

Federal and state officials are taking steps to encourage insurance companies to provide flood policies as part of an effort to decrease public disaster aid after major inundations. The government's National Flood Insurance Program — the nation's primary flood insurer — covers about 5.1 million properties, leaving tens of millions of vulnerable homeowners dependent on minimal disaster relief after a flood.”

Thomas Frank reports for ClimateWire December 3, 2019.