BERKELEY, CA—In a rare silver lining amid increasingly dire assessments of the climate crisis, optimistic researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, released a report Friday suggesting there was still time to head off environmental catastrophe before it started killing rich people. “Though rising sea levels and powerful storms are devastating coastal areas, it’s not too late to stop floods from threatening those who live high above the water in multimillion-dollar penthouses,” said climatologist and report author Dennis Gibson, explaining that by 2030, the wealthiest 0.01% of Americans would need to increase investment in charter helicopter services to ensure they would have a way to travel from a metropolitan high-rise to a vacation home without inconvenience. “Similarly, rich people’s ski chalets in Wyoming, Vermont, and the Alps are at elevations that provide them with natural protection against flooding rivers. In the case of wildfires, however, they must act now if they wish to save their mountain retreats, mansions in wine country, and various other country estates. The time has come for the wealthy to stop these fires by buying up all the surrounding properties so they can clear-cut every single tree within a mile radius of their palatial homes.” Despite its overall conclusion, the report stated that the climate crisis had already worsened to the point at which rich people really ought to start thinking about selling their private islands in the Caribbean.
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