Partisan Residential Sorting on Climate Change Risk

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Is climate change partisanship reflected in residential decisions? Comparing individual properties in the same zip code with similar elevation and proximity to the coast, houses exposed to sea level rise (SLR) are increasingly more likely to be owned by Republicans and less likely to be owned by Democrats. We find a partisan residency gap for even moderately SLR exposed properties of more than 5 percentage points, which has more than doubled over the past six years. Findings are unchanged controlling flexibly for other individual demographics and a variety of granular property characteristics, including the value of the home. Residential sorting manifests among owners regardless of occupancy, but not among renters, and is driven by long-run SLR exposure but not current flood risk. Anticipatory sorting on climate change suggests that households that are most likely to vote against climate friendly policies and least likely to adapt may ultimately bear the burden of climate change.


Type of resource text
Date created September 9, 2021


Author Bernstein, Asaf
Author Billings, Stephen B.
Author Gustafson, Matthew T.
Author Lewis, Ryan
Organizer of meeting Diamond, Rebecca
Organizer of meeting van Dijk, Winnie
Organizer of meeting Schneider, Martin
Organizer of meeting Tsivanidis, Nick


Subject residential sorting
Subject climate change
Subject sea level rise
Subject real estate
Subject politics
Genre Text
Genre Working paper
Genre Grey literature

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license (CC BY).

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Bernstein, A., Billings, S., Gustafson, M., and Lewis, R. (2022). Partisan Residential Sorting on Climate Change Risk. Stanford Digital Repository. Available at


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