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Free Content Private Property and the Defiance of Natural Limits. Coastal Flooding in the United States' Largest City

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Three cities account for nearly one-third of average annual flood losses and all are located in the United States. One of those cities is New York. New York arrived in this situation because of the advent of property in under water land and the more general establishment of private property, which underwrote the city's surging real estate market. Private property would not exist but for state power and the legal instruments that made it possible. When private property in land entered the world of exchange, problems, such as the loss from coastal flooding, required the intervention of the state, which in New York as well as the United States has been more concerned, especially over the last three decades, with supporting capital at the expense of people and nature. Increased vulnerability to disaster under global capitalism has been the result.
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Keywords: Coastal flooding; New York; capitalism; private property

Document Type: Preface

Publication date: October 1, 2018

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  • The half-yearly journal Global Environment: A Journal of History and Natural and Social Sciences acts as a forum and echo chamber for ongoing studies on the environment and world history, with special focus on modern and contemporary topics. Our intent is to gather and stimulate scholarship that, despite a diversity of approaches and themes, shares an environmental perspective on world history in its various facets, including economic development, social relations, production government, and international relations.
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