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.

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Published
September 2020

This report is a scientific assessment of historical climate trends and potential future climate change in North Carolina under increased greenhouse gas concentrations. The report includes an overview of the physical science of climate change, detailed information on observed and projected changes in temperature and precipitation averages and extremes, hurricanes and other storms, sea level, and other relevant climate metrics. Findings are presented for both the state as a whole and for each of three regions in the state: the Coastal Plain, the Piedmont, and the Western Mountains. The report also includes chapters on sea level rise, trends involving interactions of multiple aspects of the climate system (including inland flooding, wildfire, forest ecosystem changes, urban heat island effects, and air pollution), and findings relevant to engineering design standards.

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Published
November 2019

As the world strives to cut greenhouse gas emissions and limit climate change, it is crucial to track progress towards globally agreed climate goals. For a decade, the Emissions Gap Report has compared where greenhouse gas emissions are heading against where they need to be, and highlighted the best ways to close the gap. This report presents the latest data on the expected gap in 2030 for the 1.5°C and 2°C temperature targets of the Paris Agreement. It considers different scenarios, from no new climate policies since 2005 to full implementation of all national commitments under the Paris Agreement. For the first time, it looks at how large annual cuts would need to be from 2020 to 2030 to stay on track to meeting the Paris goals. The report looks at the potential of the energy transition—particularly in the power, transport, and buildings sectors—and efficiency in the use of materials such as iron steel and cement.

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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.

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Published
March 2019

Climate change is causing significant and far-reaching impacts on the Great Lakes and the Great Lakes region. This report, from 18 leading scientists and experts from Midwest and Canadian universities and research institutions, draws on the array of existing research to assess how the shifting global climate impacts the unique Great Lakes region.

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
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
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
November 2017

As a key part of the Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4), the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) oversaw the production of this stand-alone report of the state of science relating to climate change and its physical impacts. The Climate Science Special Report (CSSR) is designed to be an authoritative assessment of the science of climate change, with a focus on the United States, to serve as the foundation for efforts to assess climate-related risks and inform decision making about responses. 

As Volume 1 of NCA4, CSSR serves several purposes, including providing (1) an updated and detailed analysis of the findings of how climate change is affecting weather and climate across the United States; (2) an executive summary and 15 chapters that provide the basis for the discussion of climate science found in the second volume of NCA4; and (3) foundational information and projections for climate change, including extremes, to improve “end-to-end” consistency in sectoral, regional, and resilience analyses within the second volume. CSSR integrates and evaluates the findings on climate science and discusses the uncertainties associated with these findings. It analyzes current trends in climate change, both human-induced and natural, and projects major trends to the end of this century. As an assessment and analysis of the science, CSSR provides important input to the development of other parts of NCA4, and their primary focus on the human welfare, societal, economic and environmental elements of climate change. Much of the underlying report is written at a level more appropriate for a scientific audience, though the Executive Summary is intended to be accessible to a broader audience. 

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Published
July 2017

This report focuses on identifying, developing, and implementing strategies to increase the power system’s resilience in the face of events that can cause large-area, long-duration outages: blackouts that extend over multiple service areas and last several days or longer. Resilience is not just about lessening the likelihood that these outages will occur; it is also about limiting the scope and impact of outages when they do occur, restoring power rapidly afterwards, and learning from these experiences to better deal with events in the future.

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Published
May 2017

This Technical Report presents results from a large set of sectoral impact models that quantify and monetize climate change impacts in the U.S., with a primary focus on the contiguous U.S., under moderate and severe future climates. The report summarizes and communicates the results of the second phase of quantitative sectoral impacts analysis under the Climate Change Impacts and Risk Analysis (CIRA) project. The effort is intended to inform the fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4) of the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP). The goal of this work is to estimate climate change impacts and economic damages to multiple U.S. sectors (e.g., human health, infrastructure, and water resources) under different scenarios. Though this report does not make policy recommendations, it is designed to inform strategies to enhance resiliency and protect human health, investments, and livelihoods.

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Published
March 2017

This guidebook results from the culmination of a year of dialogue among diverse stakeholders in southeastern Connecticut who defined challenges and solutions from extreme weather, climate change, and shifting social and economic conditions. Participants included representatives from nine municipalities, public and private utilities, public health departments, chambers of commerce, major employers, conservation organizations, academic institutions, community non-profits, and state agencies, among others. The dialogue captured six themed planning sectors (water, food, ecosystem services, transportation, energy, and regional economy) in a process that used surface and integrated solutions to address singular and multiple challenges across planning sectors. The guidebook provides a quick reference resource to help shape and inform actions that will advance a regional resilience framework for southeastern Connecticut; an accompanying Summary of Findings captures the project's final outcomes and conclusions, as well as providing a comprehensive account of the objectives, process, and details. 

Climate Summaries Report Cover
Published
January 2017

These state summaries were produced to meet a demand for state-level information in the wake of the Third U.S. National Climate Assessment, released in 2014. The summaries cover assessment topics directly related to NOAA’s mission, specifically historical climate variations and trends, future climate model projections of climate conditions during the 21st century, and past and future conditions of sea level and coastal flooding. Click on each state to see key messages, figures, and and a summary of climate impacts in your state.

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Published
November 2016

This report documents that the average temperature in 2015 was over one degree higher than pre-industrial times and that the period 2011–2015 was the warmest five-year period on record, consistent with established warming trends. The report further documents that in 2015 another milestone was reached, with globally averaged CO2 levels of 400 parts per million (ppm). The year 2016 is on track to be even warmer and will be the first year in which CO2 at the Mauna Loa Observatory remains above 400 ppm all year, and for many generations to come.

The probability of extreme climate events since 2011, especially those involving extreme high temperatures, has been substantially increased by climate change, often by a factor of 10 or more. The single most significant event in humanitarian terms, with over 250,000 lives lost, was the 2011–2012 famine in the Horn of Africa, where drought was a major factor.

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Published
November 2016

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB), in collaboration with the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA), has attempted to quantify the fiscal risks posed by climate change for the Federal Government. To date, this effort has yielded two primary conclusions: first, that our current understanding of the fiscal risks of climate change is nascent, limited in scope, and subject to significant uncertainty; and second, that the evidence available thus far indicates the fiscal risks to the Federal Government could be very significant over the course of this century without ambitious action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) and adapt our communities to a changing climate.

This report outlines the contours of fiscal risk through five program-specific assessments: crop insurance, health care, wildfire suppression, hurricane-related disaster relief, and Federal facility flood risk. These programs were assessed because they are directly influenced by climate change, they have strong links to the Federal Budget, and quantitative scientific and economic models regarding the likely magnitude of impacts were available. This report also considers potential impacts to Federal revenues. 

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Published
September 2016

This guide provides basic assistance to electric utilities and other stakeholders in assessing vulnerabilities to climate change and extreme weather and in identifying an appropriate portfolio of resilience solutions. The guide is also part of a broader DOE effort to inform preparedness, resilience planning, and response initiatives.

First page of the memorandum
Published
August 2016

This document provides final guidance for federal agencies on how to consider the impacts of their actions on global climate change in their National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) reviews, providing a framework for agencies to consider both the effects of a proposed action on climate change, as indicated by its estimated greenhouse gas emissions, and the effects of climate change on a proposed action. The memorandum applies to all types of proposed federal agency actions that are subject to NEPA analysis and guides agencies on how to address the greenhouse gas emissions from federal actions and the effects of climate change on their proposed actions within the existing NEPA regulatory framework.

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Published
August 2016

This report features observed trend data on 37 climate indicators, including U.S and global temperatures, ocean acidity, sea level, river flooding, droughts, and wildfires. It documents rising temperatures, shifting patterns of snow and rainfall, and increasing numbers of extreme climate events, such as heavy rainstorms and record high temperatures. Many of these observed changes are linked to the rising levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in our atmosphere, caused by human activities.

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Published
March 2016

The State of Maine is experiencing shifts in atmospheric and oceanographic conditions that put it at the precipice of abrupt climate change. This report—part of the Department of Homeland Security's Regional Resiliency Assessment Program (RRAP)—focuses on the local and regional consequences of climate disruptions and their impacts on critical infrastructure in the Casco Bay region, the most developed and populous region in Maine. The report identifies vulnerabilities that may potentially affect the region’s ability to maintain its critical infrastructure systems and recover from the impacts of climate change.

U.S. 2015 Billion-Dollar Weather and Climate Disasters
Published
January 2016

The National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) is the nation's scorekeeper in terms of addressing severe weather and climate events in their historical perspective. As part of its responsibility of monitoring and assessing the climate, NCEI tracks and evaluates climate events in the U.S. and globally that have great economic and societal impacts. Found on these webpages are information on the weather and climate events that have had the greatest economic impact from 1980 to 2015. The U.S. has sustained 188 weather and climate disasters since 1980 where overall damages/costs reached or exceeded $1 billion (including CPI adjustment to 2015). The total cost of these 188 events exceeds $1 trillion.

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Published
October 2015

An interactive map provides access to one-page documents of climate and energy information customized for nine regions of the United States. Each document summarizes climate impacts for the region; provides a table of Quick Facts on energy supply and demand, electrical power, and critical infrastructure in the region; and enumerates examples of important energy sector vulnerabilities and climate resilience solutions.

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Published
June 2015

Many climate-related hydrologic variables in New England have changed in the past century, and many are expected to change during the next century. It is important to understand and monitor these changes because they can affect human water supply, hydroelectric power generation, transportation infrastructure, and stream and riparian ecology. This report describes a framework for hydrologic monitoring in New England by means of a climate-response network.

Cover of the Climate Change Research Plan for California
Published
February 2015

Successfully negotiating climate change challenges will require integrating a sound scientific basis for climate preparedness into local planning, resource management, infrastructure, and public health, as well as introducing new strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or increase carbon sequestration into nearly every sector of California’s economy. This Research Plan presents a strategy for developing the requisite knowledge through a targeted body of policy-relevant, California-specific research over three to five years (from early 2014), and determines California’s most critical climate-related research gaps.

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Published
December 2014

This report provides current and relevant climate adaptation information to a diverse audience of legislators, government agencies, policy makers, educators, nongovernment organizations, business, industry, researchers, other stakeholders and the public.

Cover of the IPCC Climate Change 2014 Synthesis Report
Published
November 2014

This Synthesis Report summarizes the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This report distills, synthesizes, and integrates the key findings of the three IPCC Working Group contributions—The Physical Science Basis; Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability; and Mitigation of Climate Change—to the AR5 for the benefit of decision makers in government, the private sector, and the general public. The report also includes findings from two Special Reports released in 2011: Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation and Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation. The Synthesis Report confirms that climate change caused by human activities is having impacts on ecosystems and human well-being across the U.S. and around the world.

Cover of the Safeguarding California report
Published
July 2014

This plan—an update to the 2009 California Climate Adaptation Strategy—augments previously identified strategies in light of advances in climate science and risk management options.

Cover of the State of the Climate in 2013 report
Published
July 2014

A 24-year tradition encompassing the work of 425 authors from 57 countries, 2013's State of the Climate report uses dozens of climate indicators to track patterns, changes, and trends of the global climate system.

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Published
June 2014

Intense rainstorms, floods, and heat waves will become more common in the Great Lakes region due to climate change in the coming decades. While ice-cover declines will lengthen the commercial navigation season on the lakes, warmer lake temperatures will increase risks from invasive species, and could threaten water quality. Material in this report is largely a synthesis of the information contained in the National Climate Assessment’s chapters on the Midwest (Chapter 18) and Northeast (Chapter 16). Donald Scavia, GLISA's co-director, was one of the convening authors of the NCA's Midwest regional chapter; GLISA also served as a hub for the compilation of technical inputs for the Midwest chapter. 

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Published
May 2014

The National Climate Assessment assesses the science of climate change and its impacts across the United States, now and throughout this century. It documents climate change-related impacts and responses for various sectors and regions, with the goal of better informing public and private decision making at all levels.

The assessment draws from a large body of scientific peer-reviewed research, technical input reports, and other publicly available sources; all sources meet the standards of the Information Quality Act. The report was extensively reviewed by the public and experts, including a panel of the National Academy of Sciences, the 13 federal agencies of the U.S. Global Change Research Program, and the Federal Committee on Environment, Natural Resources, and Sustainability.

Cover of Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability
Published
March 2014

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group II's contribution to the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) relates to climate impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability. A Summary for Policymakers and the underlying scientific and technical assessment are also available.

Report cover, depicting a skyline of the City of Grand Rapids
Published
December 2013

This report, the first of its kind for the City of Grand Rapids, outlines the condition of the city's climate resiliency and offers recommendations for how it can both impact and adapt to climate change. The report's goal is to both spur a larger community conversation around processes that will enable Grand Rapids to become a more climate-resilient city and to spur many specific short- and near-term projects, policies, programs, and plans to mitigate the effects of climate change. The report documents projected local climate changes, their potential negative impact to low-income families, and outlines small near-term solutions that the city can make to curb or adapt to climate change. Recommendations include investing in green space and improving the city's tree canopy, improving the city's energy autonomy, and implementing green street infrastructure materials and maintenance techniques.

Report cover, depicting a map of Madison's heat island
Published
October 2013

The Dane County Climate Change Action Council was formed in March 2013 with a mission to ensure that Dane County government was better prepared for weather extremes brought on by global climate change. The Council facilitated an internal review of county preparations and potential modifications to the operations and capital investments of the county, resulting in this report identifying Dane County’s potential vulnerabilities to weather extremes associated with global climate change and strategies to adapt to a changing climate. The report is the first step in the county’s effort to improve the resiliency of its climate-sensitive resources in the face of climate change; future steps will include cross-departmental collaborations to implement the adaptation strategies outlined in the report.

Cover of the Colorado Drought Mitigation and Response Plan
Published
August 2013

This plan was developed to provide an effective and systematic means for the State of Colorado to reduce the impacts of water shortages over the short and long term.

Cover of the U.S. Energy Sector Vulnerabilities to Climate Change and Extreme Weather report
Published
July 2013

This report examines current and potential future impacts of climate trends on the U.S. energy sector.

Cover of the Stronger, More Resilient New York report
Published
June 2013

PlaNYC is a long-term sustainability plan based on the latest climate science. This report includes ideas on how to rebuild the communities in New York City affected by Hurricane Sandy in 2012 and how to increase resilience and infrastructure of buildings city-wide in order to protect against future extreme events.

The cover of the President's Climate Action Plan
Published
June 2013

President Obama's Climate Action Plan includes a series of executive actions to reduce carbon pollution, prepare the United States for the impacts of climate change, and lead international efforts to address global climate change.

Cover of the Southwest Assessment report
Published
May 2013

A contribution to the 2013 National Climate Assessment, this report is a summary and synthesis of the past, present, and projected future of the Southwest region’s climate. It emphasizes new information and understandings since publication of the previous national assessment in 2009.

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