Hurricane researchers unite in call to curb coastal development

The media has made much of the disagreement among hurricane researchers about the effects of global warming on storm strength. So much, in fact, that it’s starting to annoy the hurricane researchers. Yesterday, 10 prominent experts in the field — who have disagreed among themselves about the climate question — released a statement saying that the media should pay more attention to the real problem, about which there is broad consensus: vulnerable coastal areas of the country are being overdeveloped. Death and financial ruin are sure to follow, they say, and the government should quit subsidizing the whole mess: “We call upon leaders of government and industry to undertake a comprehensive evaluation of building practices, and insurance, land-use, and disaster-relief policies that currently serve to promote an ever-increasing vulnerability to hurricanes.” Word.