Climate Change

Climate change is a global phenomenon, but some places seem better able to handle these changes than others

Safest Places For Climate Change in the U.S.

Rising sea levels. Extreme heat. Wildfires, hurricanes and sudden downpours. Water shortages. That’s just a few of the climate change-related terms hear about where they live. For some, they plan to stay and find ways to address the issue. Others see it as an early warning that it’s time to start searching for the safest places for climate change in the U.S.

Of course, “safest” is relatively. Climate change is a global phenomenon. It will have an impact on every part of the world. However, some places seem better able to handle these changes than others. Several publications have addressed the issue recently, offering a few ideas for people thinking about picking up stakes and moving someplace considered safer.

Scientific Evidence Connects Climate Change

One big hint: consider the Great Lakes region, which came up on a number of lists.

Best Places to Live in a Changing Climate

The following 10 cities all made the U.S. News list for the safest places for climate change in the U.S. Others were named as relatively safe places for climate change by research scientists interviewed by Business Insider.

Las Vegas, Nevada

This seems counterintuitive. However, U.S. News reports that Sin City is more resilient than other parts of the United States because of local government’s efforts to conserve. Also, much of the area around Las Vegas remains undeveloped, making it more resilient, as well.

Boise, Idaho

Many Californians have chosen Boise, Idaho, as a place to relocate, and it’s easy to see why. It’s beautiful and has far less population density than, say, southern California. Boise’s inland location offers some protection from threats to the Pacific Northwest such as rising sea levels, erosion and melting permafrost.

Green Bay, Wisconsin

Now might be a good time to become a Packers fan. The Green Bay that the city is named after is on the western shores of Lake Michigan. Experts believe the Great Lakes area will do well in climate change because local and state governments have put people and policies in place to curb negative environmental impacts. Green Bay is one of many cities in the Great Lakes region to make several lists. They include Duluth, Minn., Ann Arbor, Mich., and Madison, Wisconsin.

Albuquerque, New Mexico

The mountainous desert around Albuquerque “boasts expansive natural areas that don’t rely on humans to maintain,” according to U.S. News. While drought and extreme heat threaten the area, they report that Albuquerque is in a better position than most places to be resilient.

Santa Barbara, California

In addition to being one of the most beautiful places in the country, Santa Barbara also seems resilient to climate change. City leaders have taken proactive steps to curb the impact of climate change. For example, the city plans to be carbon neutral by 2035.

Buffalo, New York

Buffalo already is advertising itself as a climate refuge for those looking to move north and escape the possibility of extreme heat, water shortages and hurricanes. People who left Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria hit the island went to Buffalo for this very reason, according to the New York Times.

Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota

The Twin Cities in Minnesota are uniquely positioned to avoid hurricanes, extreme heat, extreme rainfall and, of course, rising sea levels. About the only issues they face in the area are winter storms and potential water shortages, but the latter issue impacts 169 million people across the country, according to the Times. So, that one is difficult to escape no matter where you live (the Southeast seems the least impacted by future water shortages, experts predict).

Charlotte, North Carolina

People who live in Charlotte enjoy a nice location. The cities founders managed to locate the city far enough inland to avoid the worst impacts of hurricanes. And while extreme heat has come to much of the South, Charlotte’s temperatures have remained mild (and even decreased a bit, according to Business Insider).

Anchorage, Alaska

As with other places ranked highly by U.S. News, the lack of development in much of the area is seen as a huge benefit to Anchorage. They write that much like Las Vegas and Albuquerque; the national environment is expected to prove much more resilient to extreme weather changes. They also expect it to adapt better to changing sea levels and temperatures.

These represent some of the safest places for climate change in the U.S. Before making a move, take the time to research your target new location thoroughly. Not every place is for everybody. Another idea is this: If you love your home close to the coast or on the plains, stay where you are and fight to get policies in place that will better protect your region and the planet.

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