My assumption is if Federal and State Legislators enact a climate resilience investment tax credit (CRITC) that is properly structured then several good things will occur:
1) Climate resiliency programs will begin to get funded which helps protect our environment from the effects of potential future climate change.
2) The implementing of these programs results in hiring of workers needed to do the work required to implement these programs. The jobs will range from a) low level blue collar employment to 2) middle level engineering and service related positions and 3) higher level positions in consulting, planning and overseeing implementation of the programs.
3) There will be a multiplier effect from the CRITC that will result in new spending or saving from the return of money to investors in the CRITC after they file their tax returns. My hypothesis is that lower income people will spend the money on local goods and services and higher income people will use the disposable income to either pay off obligations, save the difference or consume on things like vacations. The measurement of this multiplier effect is one of the reasons we need an economic environmental impact study (EIS).
I am told by some experts that the EIS will need to also evaluate methods of funding climate resilience programs. For example, New York City has looked at raising property and casualty insurance premiums by $12 per policy to help raise revenue for climate resilience programs. My hypothesis indicates that a CRITC and a tariff on P & C policies would both be needed given the sheer magnitude of climate resilience programs that will be needed in the long term.
We need a clear definition of what the EIS will measure, how it will be measured and what the implications of the results will be.
This is a starting point and I am starting to reach out to consulting organizations and educational institutions to get a clearer definition of what the EIS will consist of.
I will leave you with a thought from the 1980s during the tax shelter go-go days of the Reagan era:
If the CRITC gives a benefit of greater than 1:1 when factoring in potential Federal, State and City CRITCs then the investor actually makes money from the tax savings of the CRITC. The policy implications have to be examined from various angles but remember, a lot of economic activity occurred in the 1980s and plenty of it was beneficial economic activity, notwithstanding some abuse from the aspects of tax sheltering especially in the areas of real estate, cattle, art and oil and gas exploration.