Since its inception, NFIP, which has typically run at a loss, has become the country's primary provider of flood insurance. For instance, in 2005 and 2006 NFIP requested and was granted a $24 billion in loans from the U.S. treasury to reimburse Gulf Coast customers for losses caused by Hurricane Katrina. [Evan] Mills [an environmental and energy systems scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory] says that it is unlikely NFIP will ever be able to pay back the loan, given that it pulls in an average of only about $2 billion a year in premiums from consumers.While some researchers have already completed analyses of the current and ultimate cost of global climate change--Sir Nicholas Stern, former chief economist at the World Bank commissioned a report that puts the figure at $9 trillion -- others have countered with what they believe will be the even more enormous cost of changing our ways in order to avert these harms: Lombard Street Research, a for-profit macroeconomic research think tank that advises businesses has put the figure as high as $18 trillion. No matter what we do, it's clear that climate change could be a significant drag on the world economy for centuries to come -- not to mention the indirect effects like climate change-caused wars: current, projected and historical.
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