South Florida will soon have to adapt to the effects of sea level rise, extreme heat and increased storm activity, as the world’s temperature and weather patterns change.
Global Investors Are Watching
Sea level rise presents a long-term strategic issue that will decide how and in what manner South Florida continues to be a place that people want to live and invest in. That’s according to Aaron Gordon, a partner at Schwartz Media Strategies, which represents various companies, investors, real estate developers and public sector clients.
He said global investors no longer see Miami as one of a small group of cities battling the effects of climate change.
“Now, a sophisticated global investor is looking at this holistically and realizing that, ‘You know what? It’s affecting every place, maybe in different ways, but it’s affecting every place. I’m going to put my capital somewhere because I have a mandate to deploy my capital. I’m going to do it somewhere where I know the community is taking it seriously, investing in solutions.’ And when it comes to that, few places can compete with Miami,” Gordon said.
Gordon isn’t the first to commend the leadership of local officials, especially Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava and Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who have prioritized preparing for the effects of climate change.
“Residents and voters have actually agreed to tax themselves to pay for those things, so in that regard Miami has a head start by comparison with other cities,” Gordon said.
Though local governments are taking the lead, they can’t succeed alone.
On top of the obvious reasons for wanting to protect the community, Gordon said it also makes sense for businesses to be seen as leaning into the problem rather than running away from it. He recommended that leaders in the public and private sectors speak openly about the investments and adjustments they’re making.
“When people talk about tangible actions that are being taken, it gives them a sense of confidence,” he said. “And it’s easy to say that the real estate industry is ignoring the problem, but you could also make the argument that the real estate industry is proceeding with investment, with development, with sales, with marketing because they’re confident that the problem is being addressed.”