Insurance Regulations Fueling California Wildfires?

Insurance regulations that encourage people to build, and rebuild, in fire prone areas may be playing a part in the recent outbreak of wildfires in California.

Thanks to the state’s funky way of regulating insurance, residents in fire-prone areas have little reason to move out of harm’s way after the last ember has cooled, says Ray Lehmann, an insurance policy expert at the R Street Institute.

“California makes it really difficult for the market to do what it would normally do in these cases, which is when assessments of risk go up, insurance rates go up, and a place becomes less attractive to build there,” he says.

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