In its discussion of U.S impacts of climate change, the NY Times lists three big challenges; THE SOUTHWEST WILL FRY, THE EAST WILL SOAK ,ALASKA WILL KEEP MELTING
Each of these are anticipated, serious challenges. How can business make money designing new products and strategies for coping with these anticipated issues? How successful will the very best products be in helping us to cope? Through free market competition, how cheap will these products be? Note my optimism. Free market adaptation does not require that a majority of the U.S Congress vote in favor of low carbon policy. It does not require that the typical voter be willing to vote for higher gas prices. Instead, free market adaptation relies on our very best minds to seek to be the next "Green Zuck" and come up with new ideas (the equivalent of Diet Dr. Pepper) that help us to adapt. These individuals are pursuing their own narrow self interest of trying to become rich but we all benefit from their discoveries. This isn't a free lunch. If our innovative nerds focus on these issues, does this retard progress in new medical technologies?
President Obama can accelerate this process by giving the NSF new resources so that University Nerds can do the basic research that would provide the backbone for the future new adaptation products. For example, better batteries that allow solar homes to store power would allow more households to go off the grid and be less susceptible to grid blackouts.