Access a range of climate-related reports issued by government agencies and scientific organizations. Browse the reports listed below, or filter by scope, content, or focus in the boxes above. To expand your results, click the Clear Filters link.

Published
October 2020

This guidance aims to enhance the capacity of health care facilities to protect and improve the health of their target communities in an unstable and changing climate. The document also intends to empower health care facilities to be environmentally sustainable, by optimizing the use of their resources and minimizing the release of waste into the environment. Climate resilient and environmentally sustainable health care facilities contribute to high quality of care and accessibility of services, and by helping reduce facility costs also ensure better affordability. 

This document aims to:

  • Guide professionals working in health care settings to understand and effectively prepare for the additional health risks posed by climate change.
  • Monitor, anticipate, manage and adapt to the health risks associated with climate change.
  • Guide health care facility officials to work with health determining sectors (including water and sanitation, energy, transportation, food, urban planning, environment) to prepare for additional health risks posed by climate change through a resilience approach, and to promote environmentally sustainable practices in providing these services.
  • Provide tools to assist health care facility officials assess their resilience to climate change threats, and their environmental sustainability based upon the appropriate use of resources (in particular water and energy and sustainable procurement), and release of hazards (biological, chemical, radiological), to their surrounding environment.
  • Promote actions to ensure that health care facilities are constantly and increasingly strengthened and continue to be efficient and responsive to improve health and contribute to reducing inequities and vulnerability within their local settings.
Published
July 2020

High-tide flooding, often referred to as "nuisance" or “sunny day” flooding, is increasingly common due to years of relative sea level increases. It occurs when tides reach anywhere from 1.75 to 2 feet above the daily average high tide and start spilling onto streets or bubbling up from storm drains. As sea level rise continues, damaging floods that decades ago happened only during a storm now happen more regularly, such as during a full-moon tide or with a change in prevailing winds or currents.

Each year, NOAA documents changes in high-tide flooding patterns from the previous year at 98 NOAA tide gauges along the U.S. coast, and provides a flooding outlook for these locations for the coming year, as well as projections for the next several decades.

Published
July 2020

NOAA’s Environmental Literacy Program (ELP) Community Resilience Education Theory of Change communicates the overarching philosophy guiding its grants program. ELP supports projects that both inspire and educate people to use Earth system science to increase ecosystem stewardship and resilience to extreme weather, climate change, and other environmental hazards. 

A theory of change is broad in scope and begins with a problem statement and ends with a goal. In between, causal pathways systemically lay out the steps, or short-, mid-, and long-term outcomes that must be met to achieve the end goal.

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Published
July 2020

This report provides national, regional, and local information to support effective decision making by U.S. agricultural producers, resource managers, and other agricultural system stakeholders.  A set of 20 indicators identifies high-priority agricultural and climate data products while providing the basis for tracking climate change as it plays out across American working lands, toward devising adaptive operational responses.

The report was written as input to the sustained National Climate Assessment process to provide a discrete set of variables that describe linkages between climate trends and variability and U.S. agriculture in recent decades. An additional objective is that the indicators themselves (along with the frameworks for constructing location- and operation-specifc indicators) provide an information resource that can help information service programs, such as USDA’s Climate Hubs, evaluate operational risks posed by climate change in specifc production systems across the country. 

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Published
September 2019

This report and the accompanying community spotlights provide an overview of climate change science, reasons why action is needed, how science supports decision making and planning, ways to adapt to climate change and limit the severity of its effects, and how such efforts can help build resiliency. The report illustrates the ways in which science can help individuals, communities, businesses, and government agencies make informed decisions. By working together to identify solutions and bring about positive change, we can reduce the risks faced by current and future generations.

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Published
September 2019

The Design Guidelines serve as a reference for residents, business owners, and developers to translate flood resiliency strategies into best practices. They include a resilience toolkit to address building form, building envelope, and site access; description and supporting information on technical and cost considerations, insurance factors, and sustainable design co-benefits; guidance on urban design, accessibility, and public realm matters related to changes in elevation between a site and surrounding infrastructure; measures to manage additional climate hazards; and case studies that apply resilience strategies from the toolkit to representative building types in the future flood zone. The Guidelines will also be used to administer a future Coastal Flood Resilience Zoning Overlay District. 

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Published
September 2019

This report focuses on making the case for climate adaptation, providing specific insights and recommendations in key sectors: food security, the natural environment, water, cities and urban areas, infrastructure, disaster risk management, and finance. It is designed to inspire action among decision makers, including heads of state and government officials, mayors, business executives, investors, and community leaders.

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Published
August 2019

Alaska has recently experienced profound environmental change related to extreme weather events and deviations from the historical climate. Sustained warmth, sea ice loss, coastal flooding, river flooding, and major ecosystem changes have impacted the daily lives of Alaskans around the state. The International Arctic Research Center and the University of Alaska Fairbanks have documented these changes, and are providing individuals, Alaska businesses, communities, government, and others with the resources they need to better assess impacts and develop adaptation strategies.

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Published
July 2019

Heatwaves are deadly and their impacts are on the rise globally due to climate change. People living in urban areas are amongst the hardest hit when a heatwave occurs because these are hotter than the surrounding countryside. It is crucial that cities incorporate heat-reduction tactics such as green spaces into their plans for growth or retrofit them in built areas; this emergency can only be avoided if city institutions, community groups, and planners contribute to reducing heat risk now and in the future. This guide is intended to help city staff take the first steps to understanding the heat risks they face, develop an early warning system, work with partners to consolidate heat action plans, and adapt urban planning practices.

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Published
July 2019

This analysis shows the rapid, widespread increases in extreme heat that are projected to occur across the country due to climate change, including conditions so extreme that a heat index cannot be measured. The analysis also finds that the intensity of the coming heat depends heavily on how quickly we act now to reduce heat-trapping emissions. For this national analysis, extreme heat is measured according to the heat index, the combination of temperature and humidity that creates the “feels like” temperature, and includes four different heat index thresholds, each of which brings increasingly dangerous health risks: above 90°F, above 100°F, above 105°F, and "off the charts." The report features three time frames—historical, midcentury, and late century—and three different scenarios of climate action. 

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Published
July 2019

This report identifies eight distinct strategies cities are using to pay for large-scale climate resilience projects, mostly to address sea level rise and flooding. The analysis is based on a close look at how eight U.S. cities in seven states have been organizing the funding needed to implement their ambitious climate resilience plans. Each of these cities has had to find its own way to public and private financial resources, because there is no system in place for solving the problem of how to pay for climate resilience. Examining these cities’ pathways revealed common strategies that, while only reflecting the leading edge of urban climate resilience financing practices, quite likely foreshadow what other cities already or may do. 

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Published
June 2019

This report is the culmination of a workshop and webinars exploring activities, resources, capabilities, and challenges to the prediction of infectious diseases at sub-seasonal and seasonal time scales. The webinars and workshop were led by a steering committee that included members from the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s Interagency Group on Integrated Modeling and Interagency Crosscutting Group on Climate Change and Human Health, as well as the National Science and Technology Council’s Pandemic Prediction and Forecasting Science and Technology Working group. The report highlights key gaps and provides a summary of needed interagency actions ranging from research to forecast production—some of which have already started.

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Published
April 2019

According to the Fourth National Climate Assessment, ecologically and economically valuable resources are being lost at an alarming rate due to climate change impacts. For conservation funders, these trends represent a growing threat to the natural systems where they have already made significant investments and, importantly, the durability of future conservation programs and outcomes as climate change accelerates. This report offers practical guidance to help funders prepare for changes that are imminent, intentionally consider climate change in their work, and thus work to ensure that conservation investments are more durable.

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Published
April 2019

Regional adaptation fora (RAFs) are regional climate change adaptation conferences associated with the National Adaptation Forum. There are six RAFs: the California Adaptation Forum, the Carolinas Climate Resilience Conference, the Great Lakes Adaptation Forum, Local Solutions: Eastern Climate Preparedness Conference, the Southeast Florida Climate Change Compact Summit, and the Southwest Adaptation Forum. This report presents analysis and information drawn from the 2018 RAFs to gain insight about the state of the field, assess opportunities for the field to leverage the RAFs to accelerate dissemination and uptake of promoting promising adaptation practices across regions, and determine how the American Society of Adaptation Professionals can best support the RAFs going forward. The top finding is that RAFs are moving the needle for adaptation professionals and the field. The report serves as a testament to the need for, and value of, regional adaptation fora and encourages increased investment in these events and greater coordination between them.

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Published
April 2019

This report is the first major product of the current Canadian national assessment, which launched in 2017 and intends to publish a series of authoritative reports between 2018 and 2021. This assessment focuses on answering the questions: how has Canada’s climate changed to date, why, and what changes are projected for the future? This initial report provides a climate science foundation for the other national assessment products. Its objectives are to assess current knowledge about how Canada’s climate is changing and why, and what changes are projected for the future, to help inform mitigation and adaptation decision making and to help raise public awareness and understanding of Canada’s changing climate. The CCCR is written for a broad range of professionals who are familiar with the topic of climate change but who may not have expertise in the physical sciences. 

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Published
April 2019

This report is the result of an extensive literature review and survey of 90 practitioners representing 15 Regional Climate Collaboratives (RCCs). The report details how RCCs operate, their impacts in a regional capacity, key successes thus far, as well as barriers and gaps in capacity. After careful analysis, the report also establishes a framework for classification of RCC activity.

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Published
April 2019

The guidance provided by this report is designed to help all communities create disaster debris management plans. It assists communities in planning for natural disaster debris before disasters—such as hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, volcanoes, floods, wildfires, and winter storms—occur by providing useful, relevant information intended to increase community preparedness and resiliency. The report includes recommended components of a debris management plan, suggested management options for various natural disaster debris streams, a collection of case studies that highlights how several communities prepared for and managed debris generated by recent natural disasters, resources to consult in planning for natural disasters, and the EPA’s recommended pre-incident planning process to help prepare communities for effective disaster debris management.

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Published
April 2019

The Beloved Community is a vision for our future where all people share equally in the wealth and bounty of the earth, where we protect its abundance, diversity, and beauty for future generations. In this vision of liberation, racism, exploitation, and domination are replaced by democracy, cooperation, interdependence, and love. To get there, we pursue transformative, systems-change solutions. What do we mean by this? The root causes of the problems our communities face—like climate change, racism, and economic inequality—are all deeply connected. Since the problems are connected, so are the solutions. The purpose of this toolkit is to put us on the path toward achieving this vision. Through the context of building equity and resilience into climate adaptation planning, we introduce strategies to transform our communities and, by extension, society. Our ultimate goal is to create lasting and systemic change. At the same time, we recognize the urgency of the issues our communities face and the need to take action now. That is why we pursue change at every scale—from policy changes to community-based projects—to institute the transformative change we need to uphold our vision of the beloved community.

Cover of report with people in boat on a flooded street.
Published
March 2019

Flooding is the natural hazard with the greatest economic and social impact in the United States, and these impacts are becoming more severe over time. This report contributes to existing knowledge on urban flooding by examining real-world examples in specific metropolitan areas: Baltimore, Houston, Chicago, and Phoenix. The report identifies commonalities and variances among the case study metropolitan areas in terms of causes, adverse impacts, unexpected problems in recovery, or effective mitigation strategies, as well as key themes of urban flooding. It also relates, as appropriate, causes and actions of urban flooding to existing federal resources or policies.

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Published
March 2019

The frequency and severity of disasters over the last few decades have presented unprecedented challenges for communities across the United States. This report summarizes the existing portfolio of relevant or related resilience measurement efforts and notes gaps and challenges associated with them. It describes how some communities build and measure resilience, and offers four key actions that communities could take to build and measure their resilience to address gaps identified in current community resilience measurement efforts. The report also provides recommendations to the Gulf Research Program to build and measure resilience in the Gulf of Mexico region.

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Published
January 2019

The EWN Atlas is a collection of 56 projects illustrating a diverse portfolio of contexts, motivations, and successful outcomes, presented and considered from an Engineering With Nature® perspective to reveal the usefulness of nature-based approaches and the range of benefits that can be achieved. Engineering With Nature is an initiative of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers enabling more sustainable delivery of economic, social, and environmental benefits associated with water resources infrastructure. EWN intentionally aligns natural and engineering processes to efficiently and sustainably deliver economic, environmental, and social benefits through collaborative processes.

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Published
January 2019

Georgetown Climate Center (GCC) prepared this report to help the Eastern Shore Climate Adaptation Partnership (ESCAP) identify strategies for adapting to increasing sea level rise and flood risk in the Eastern Shore region of Maryland. ESCAP worked with the Eastern Shore Regional GIS cooperative to assess sea level rise vulnerabilities in the six counties and two municipalities that participate in ESCAP. GCC and the University of Maryland Environmental Finance Center helped to identify potential legal and policy options for enhancing flood resilience in Eastern Shore communities. This report summarizes how more rural jurisdictions, like those on the Eastern Shore, can enhance flood resilience by updating local land use ordinances and floodplain regulations and by pursuing other non-regulatory options, including acquiring flood-prone properties, preserving open space in the floodplain, and coordinating regionally on public outreach and education programs.

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Published
November 2018

This guidebook was designed to support tribes’ efforts to proactively adapt to climate change and thrive for generations to come, building on the ongoing climate-related work in tribal communities. It provides a framework for climate change adaptation planning in the context of existing tribal priorities, and directly considers the unique issues facing indigenous communities. Specifically, the Guidebook directs readers to the foundation of existing resources and tribal adaptation efforts and identifies opportunities for braiding together traditional knowledges and western science in developing adaptation plans. The framework outlined in the guidebook will be useful for tribes in different phases of climate adaptation planning efforts, and supports learning from the experiences, approaches, and lessons of tribes working to become more resilient to climate change.

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Published
November 2018

This report offers the first national assessment of the scope and consequences of urban flooding in the United States. Researchers analyzed available data concerning urban flooding, surveyed municipal flood and stormwater managers, and met with professionals whose disciplines intersect with urban flooding at the local, state, and national level. The research team's findings affirm that urban flooding is a national and significant source of economic loss, social disruption, and housing inequality. This report presents the full results of the study, addresses governance issues that affect urban flood risk reduction, examines critical challenges, and offers recommendations for actions.

Cover of Fourth National Climate Assessment Volume II report
Published
November 2018

The Global Change Research Act of 1990 mandates that the U.S. Global Change Research Program deliver a report to Congress and the President no less than every four years that “1) integrates, evaluates, and interprets the findings of the Program…; 2) analyzes the effects of global change on the natural environment, agriculture, energy production and use, land and water resources, transportation, human health and welfare, human social systems, and biological diversity; and 3) analyzes current trends in global change, both human-induced and natural, and projects major trends for the subsequent 25 to 100 years.” The Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4) fulfills that mandate in two volumes. This report, Volume II, draws on the foundational science described in Volume I, the Climate Science Special Report. Volume II focuses on the human welfare, societal, and environmental elements of climate change and variability for 10 regions and 18 national topics, with particular attention paid to observed and projected risks, impacts, consideration of risk reduction, and implications under different mitigation pathways. Where possible, NCA4 Volume II provides examples of actions underway in communities across the United States to reduce the risks associated with climate change, increase resilience, and improve livelihoods. This assessment was written to help inform decision makers, utility and natural resource managers, public health officials, emergency planners, and other stakeholders by providing a thorough examination of the effects of climate change on the United States.

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Published
November 2018

The Second State of the Carbon Cycle Report (SOCCR2) was led and developed by the Carbon Cycle Interagency Working Group under the auspices of the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Contributing to the Fourth National Climate Assessment, SOCCR2 is designed as a special interagency assessment focused on the advances in the science and the understanding of the carbon cycle across North America since the first SOCCR (2007). Specifically, SOCCR2 focuses on U.S. and North American carbon cycle processes, stocks, fluxes, and interactions with global-scale carbon budgets and climate change impacts in managed and unmanaged systems. The report includes an assessment of the carbon stocks and fluxes in soils, water (including near-coastal oceans), vegetation, aquatic-terrestrial interfaces (e.g., coasts, estuaries, wetlands), human settlements, agriculture, and forestry. It considers relevant carbon management science perspectives and science-based tools for supporting and informing decisions. The status of and emerging opportunities for improving measurements, observations, and projections of stocks and fluxes in the carbon cycle, including uncertainty identification, are part of the report.

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Published
October 2018

This special report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate change describes the impacts of global warming of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels. The report also describes potential global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty.

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Published
July 2018

This report provides an updated set of sea level rise projections that incorporate the latest science and community-scale projections. The new projections can be applied to risk management and planning processes, and are recommend for communities performing coastal impacts assessments within the state of Washington.

An interactive map based on the report shows relative sea level rise (RSLR) projections for 171 sites along Washington’s coast. The projections for each site are provided as a downloadable excel spreadsheet which contains three worksheets: (1) an overview, (2) RSLR projections for a low greenhouse gas scenario (RCP 4.5), and (3) RSLR projections for a high greenhouse gas scenario (RCP 8.5).

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Published
June 2018

This analysis examines what's at risk for U.S. coastal real estate from sea level rise. Millions of Americans living in coastal communities will face more frequent and disruptive high-tide flooding; as this flooding increases, it will reach a threshold where normal routines become impossible and coastal residents, communities, and businesses are forced to make difficult, often costly choices. For this analysis, that threshold is defined as flooding that occurs 26 times per year (on average, once every other week) or more, a level of disruption referred to as chronic inundation. The results identify the number of residential and commercial properties at risk of chronic inundation—and the total current property value, estimated population, and property tax base affected—for the entire coastline of the lower 48 states.

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Published
May 2018

As incomes rise and populations grow, especially in the world’s hotter regions, the use of air conditioners is becoming increasingly common. In fact, the use of air conditioners and electric fans already accounts for about a fifth of the total electricity in buildings around the world–or 10 percent of all global electricity consumption. Over the next three decades, the use of ACs is set to soar, becoming one of the top drivers of global electricity demand. This new analysis by the International Energy Agency shows how new standards can help the world avoid facing such a “cold crunch” by helping improve efficiency while also staying cool.

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Published
March 2018

This report considers the economic, environmental, and social factors that contribute to resilience, and how the concept of resilience translates to the private sector, municipal decision makers, and communities. It summarizes key themes posed by the Urban Land Institute's resilience work in the years since Hurricane Sandy, with a particular focus on ULI’s resilience-focused Advisory Services work. Ten Principles was developed through a ULI member workshop in summer 2017, which included 15 ULI member leaders who had served on resilience-focused Advisory Services Panels and other Urban Resilience program activities over the past four years. The members attending the workshop formulated the ten principles, which are illustrated in the report with on-the-ground examples from Advisory Services panels.

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Published
February 2018

This guide contains five modules that provide best practices on conducting vulnerability assessments, collaboration among stakeholders, communicating drought preparedness and response strategies, and where to find (and how to use) data on drought. The guide also includes a list of valuable resources for public health professionals. The authors of the guide also developed and included two attractive, user-friendly handouts that can be easily customized and reproduced for community outreach.

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Published
January 2018

The goal of this concerted effort is to help Thurston County (Washington) and the broader South Puget Sound region prepare for and adjust to climate change. The Thurston Regional Planning Council crafted this document with a $250,000 National Estuary Program grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and significant in-kind support from the community. Partners included representatives from tribes, municipalities, universities, nonprofits, businesses, and other entities within the project area: three geographically diverse watersheds (Nisqually, Deschutes, and Kennedy-Goldsborough) within Thurston County that drain into Puget Sound. The watersheds encompass beaches, rivers, lakes, wetlands, highlands, forests, farms, ranches, cities, towns, and tribal reservations. It is the Council's hope that other communities throughout the Puget Sound region, state, and nation will replicate this project’s science-based assessments, innovative public-engagement efforts (including development of a resilience game), collaborative planning processes, economic analyses, and comprehensive actions.

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Published
January 2018

During late 2016, the National Integrated Drought Information System, the National Drought Mitigation Center, the Midwestern Regional Climate Center, and other regional partners convened four stakeholder meetings in the Midwest Drought Early Warning System. Each of these meetings included a historical drought overview and climate outlook for the region, discussion of critical drought-related needs and challenges, exploration of available tools, local drought planning and management approaches, and strategy development to improve drought early warning and resiliency in the Midwest.

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Published
January 2018

In 1950, fewer than one-third of the world's people lived in cities. Today more than half do. By 2050, urban areas will be home to some two-thirds of Earth's human population. This scale and pace of urbanization has never been seen in human history.

The report provides a foundation for new scientific collaborations on how cities function, how they grow, and how they can be managed sustainably for decades to come.

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Published
December 2017

This report acknowledges that climate adaptation has begun to emerge as a field of practice, but states that the work is not evolving quickly or deliberately enough for communities to adequately prepare for the dangerous shocks and stresses that increasingly will be introduced by climate change. The report assesses the current state of the climate adaptation field, provides a vision of what a mature, effective field would look like, and recommends steps that should be taken to realize that vision.

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