The White House is estimating that the emissions reduction measures in the Inflation Reduction Act will avoid $2 trillion in economic damages from climate payouts related to disasters like floods, droughts, and fires.
Typically, the government is on the hook to pay out vast sums for disaster relief and to cover the costs of lost crops and homeowners who live in flood-prone areas. And those payouts don't include the increasing toll that pollution takes on public health.
"Preserving the planet's environment will benefit human health globally, reduce the risk of conflict and migration and ensure the viability of ecosystems," the White House Office of Management and Budget wrote in a newly released report.
According to the OMB, increased climate security could provide additional savings from greater political stability, less damage to critical infrastructure, and ecosystem preservation that haven't been penciled out in its accounting.
"The bottom line: over the long-term, the Inflation Reduction Act will help avoid billions of dollars that the Federal Government might otherwise expect to transfer to households and businesses for programs like crop insurance, health insurance, and fire suppression due to climate change," wrote Candace Vahlsing, Associate Director for Climate, Energy, Environment, and Science, Office of Management and Budget, in a blog post. "And the Inflation Reduction Act will help ease the burden that climate change imposes on the American public, strengthen our economy, and reduce future financial risks to the Federal Government and to taxpayers."