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
February 2020

Thin-layer placement (TLP), an emergent adaptation strategy that mimics natural sediment deposition processes, is one of the only viable options to protect tidal marshes from sea level rise in their current footprint. To improve the success of thin-layer placement projects, a collaborative research team at Narragansett Bay and Elkhorn Slough led coordinated restoration experiments at eight National Estuarine Research Reserves on the U.S. East and West coasts to test TLP across diverse marsh plant communities, and produced guidance and recommendations for TLP use. This guidance document is intended to help restoration practitioners, property owners, coastal managers, and funders better understand this strategy for tidal marsh restoration and resilience in the face of sea level rise.

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Published
January 2020

This document summarizes the presentations and discussions that were part of the fourth in-person partner event sponsored by the NOAA in the Caribbean Initiative. The workshops were held the week of August 19, 2019, in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and in St. Croix, Virgin Islands. Topics included the use of nature-based solutions to combat coastal erosion and flooding, including due to hurricanes, and adaptation planning in response to global climate change.

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Published
December 2019

Arctic ecosystems and communities are increasingly at risk due to continued warming and declining sea ice. The Arctic marine ecosystem and the communities that depend upon it continue to experience unprecedented changes as a result of warming air temperatures, declining sea ice, and warming waters. This 2019 update to the Arctic Report Card draws particular attention to the Bering Sea region, where declining winter sea ice exemplifies the potential for sudden and extreme change. Indigenous Elders from the Bering Sea region offer their experiences of living at the forefront of climate change.

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Published
December 2019

The world continues to emit greenhouse gases while the planet's climate is changing faster than ever. This report intends to take up the latest and most essential scientific findings published in an extraordinary year—the climate science year in review.

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Published
December 2019

A growing number of local governments are taking steps toward climate adaptation, mostly through the development of climate adaptation plans. However, the rate and pace of adaptation action has significantly lagged behind planning, especially in mid- and small-sized municipalities where resources are often limited and local politics may further delay action. This report describes how to use economics to build support for climate adaptation. Using case studies from cities large and small, it highlights how to effectively use economic data and methods, provides eight types of economic analyses for climate adaptation, and explains how to clearly communicate economic data to different audiences.

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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
October 2019

The Disaster Resilience Framework serves as a guide for analysis of federal actions to facilitate and promote resilience to natural disasters. This report identifies the rising number of natural disasters and increasing reliance on federal assistance as a significant source of federal fiscal exposure. Disaster resilience helps to reduce the impact of climate-related events on people and property. Recognizing the gravity of the effect of these disasters on the American people and the fiscal exposure it creates, the framework was made to help those who have responsibility for oversight and management of federal efforts to consider what they might do that will result in federal and non-federal decision makers taking action to increase disaster resilience throughout the nation.

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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
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

The Fish and Wildlife Relevancy Roadmap is a practical guide that state and provincial fish and wildlife conservation agencies can use to overcome barriers to broader relevance, public engagement, and support. The roadmap is not prescriptive and provides multiple pathways to respond to the diverse social, economic, demographic, political, and environmental changes that states and provinces face. The Roadmap was developed by a team of over 60 leaders from state, federal, provincial, and private conservation organizations and others with an interest in conservation.

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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
August 2019

This guide is designed to help transportation practitioners understand how and where nature-based and hybrid solutions can be used to improve the resilience of coastal roads and bridges. It summarizes the potential flood-reduction benefits and co-benefits of these strategies, then follows the steps in the project delivery process, providing guidance on considering nature-based solutions in the planning process, conducting site assessments, key engineering and ecological design considerations, permitting approaches, construction considerations, and monitoring and maintenance strategies. The guide also includes appendices with site characterization tools, decision support for selecting nature-based solutions, suggested performance metrics, and links to additional tools and resources.

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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. 

Published
July 2019

Communities in Hawai'i are highly vulnerable to natural disasters such as hurricanes, tsunamis, floods, seasonal high waves, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, lava flows, and sea level rise. Since a changing climate is expected to worsen the effects of these natural hazards, planners and communities must work together to prepare for long term disastor recovery. The study developed statewide guidance documents and tools to improve community resilience to coastal hazards and sea level rise, thereby encouraging communities to focus on recovery practices before a disaster hits. 

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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

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
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
May 2019

Drawing and building on the findings of the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme's (AMAP) 2017 Snow, Water, Ice and Permafrost in the Arctic (SWIPA) assessment, this document provides updated observations, information from other recent assessments, and conclusions from the latest reviews of Arctic trends and indicators. The pace of change in the Arctic is so rapid that new records are being set annually, and each additional year of data strengthens the already compelling evidence of a rapidly changing Arctic. 

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Published
May 2019

The 2017 drought was a rapid-onset event for northeast Montana, the Dakotas, and the Canadian Prairies during the spring and summer of 2017. It was the worst drought to impact the U.S. Northern Plains in decades, and it decimated crops across the region, resulting in $2.6 billion in agricultural losses in the U.S. alone. The unique circumstances of this drought created an opportunity to evaluate and improve the efficacy of drought-related coordination, communication, and management within the region in preparation for future droughts.

Published
May 2019

The Central Council of the Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska (Tlingit & Haida) is a federally recognized Indian Tribe that serves 20 villages and communities stretching over 43,000 square miles within the Alaska Panhandle. The Tlingit and Haida membership is among the largest, most isolated, and most geographically dispersed of Native or Tribal populations nationwide. The region encompasses a 525-mile strip of coastline and interior waterways, bordered by Canada on the north, south, and east, with the Gulf of Alaska on the west.

The Central Council recognizes that wild salmon, berries, clams, herring, halibut, yellow cedar and other species important for subsistence, cash and culture are at risk. In response, they have released a 53-page climate change adaptation plan. The document is a roadmap for prioritizing, monitoring, and responding to threats stemming from warming air and ocean temperatures, caused by increasing levels of greenhouse gases trapped in the atmosphere.

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Published
May 2019

This Summary for Policymakers summarizes the findings of the AMAP Assessment 2018: Arctic Ocean Acidification report released in October 2018. It offers a review of the latest science relating to regional ocean acidification, the biological responses to it, an overview of case studies and their associated findings, and recommendations for the Arctic Council.

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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

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
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

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
March 2019

This plan represents the efforts of the State of Minnesota in fulfilling the responsibility for hazard mitigation planning. The purpose of this plan is to identify the state’s major hazards, assess the vulnerability to those hazards, and take steps to reduce vulnerability using the technical and program resources of Minnesota agencies. The process has included consideration of current and expected future impacts from Minnesota’s already changing climate, as relevant to hazard mitigation planning. The plan identifies goals and recommends actions and initiatives for the state government to adapt to, reduce, and/or prevent injury and damage from hazardous events.

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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

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.

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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
February 2019

This drought assessment report spans a Northern Great Plains region that includes North Dakota, South Dakota, and eastern Montana. It begins with an examination of the observed hydroclimatic conditions that led to the 2017 spring and summertime drought and places those conditions into historical context of 1895–present. The role of anthropogenic climate change is assessed through its possible impact on 2017 precipitation, temperature, and soil moisture. Finally, the report examines whether the record-low summertime precipitation that led to the 2017 drought was predicted by modern initialized forecast systems used by drought forecasters.

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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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