Legislation introduced in the House on Monday would prevent President Trump from receiving federally subsidized flood insurance, amid warnings that the effects of climate change could cause parts of his Mar-a-Lago resort and other south Florida properties to be underwater in coming years.
The bill from Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) — titled the Prohibiting Aid for Recipients Ignoring Science (PARIS) Act — would ensure properties owned by a president or a president’s family members can’t have access to subsidized insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program.
An analysis by Coastal Risk Consulting found that the Mar-a-Lago grounds in Palm Beach, Fla., could be under at least a foot of water for 210 days a year because of tidal flooding.
And it’s not just Mar-a-Lago, where Trump spent many weekends this past winter after taking office in January, that might be affected by rising sea levels resulting from climate change.
Trump’s oceanfront condos in Miami and his Doral golf course would also be threatened, according to projections by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the South Florida Regional Climate Change Compact.
Blumenauer wants to make Trump feel the potential effects of his withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, which made the U.S. one of only three countries in the world to abstain and drew anger from key longstanding allies.
The Trump administration also refused to sign onto parts of a Group of Seven declaration regarding climate change in light of the decision to leave the Paris pact.
“The American people should not be responsible for bailing out leaders who ignore science to gain political points, while subjecting the United States — and the rest of the world — to the catastrophic effects of climate change,” Blumenauer said in a statement. “Trump may choose to reject science, but he can’t ignore the impacts — especially as they happen in his own backyard.”
Trump has said climate change is a “hoax” created by the Chinese, though his aides have largely avoided answering questions in recent weeks as to whether the president believes climate change is real.
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told CNN’s “State of the Union” earlier this month that Trump “believes the climate is changing and he believes pollutants are part of the equation.”
“Just because the U.S. got out of a club doesn’t mean we aren’t going to care about the environment,” Haley said.