Climate Adaptation

The Climate Adaptation Program Area provides resources, tools, and lessons learned for organizations working to adjust to a changing climate to minimize negative effects and take advantage of new opportunities.

Potential negative effects include, but are not limited to: sea level rise, changing growing seasons, increased drought, and destruction of vital species habitat.

Climate Change Adaptation and Federal Facilities

Under the now revoked Executive Order 13514, Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance, Federal agencies were required to evaluate their climate change risks and vulnerabilities to manage the effects of climate change on the agency's mission and operations in both the short and long-term as part of the formal Strategic Sustainability Performance Planning process.

While the formal planning process required under EO 13514 is no longer in effect, federal facilities and agencies are directly involved in climate change adaptation efforts due to the local, regional, and national impact of climate change on a wide range of Federal services, operations, programs, assets, and our national security.

Examples of Federal agencies working to support both public and private climate change adaptation efforts are:

  • EPA's Climate Change Adaptation Resource Center (ARC-X) – which has information about: the risks posed by climate change to the issues of concern; relevant adaptation strategies; case studies illustrating how other communities have successfully adapted to those risks and tools to replicate their successes; and EPA funding opportunities.
  • NOAA's Climate.gov - which provides timely and authoritative information about climate as well as tools and resources that help people make informed decisions about climate risks, vulnerability, and resilience.
  • NASA's Global Climate Change - which enables a user to view the impact of climate change over time; learn about the evidence supporting climate change, effects of climate change, and potential solutions.
  • USDA's Climate Solutions – which outlines ten regional climate hub areas and the information needed to manage risk adaptation and climate change mitigation for each of those regions.
  • USGS's Climate Science Centers & National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center – whose mission is to work with natural and cultural resource managers to gather the scientific information and build the tools needed to help fish, wildlife and ecosystems adapt to the impacts of climate change.
  • NPS's Climate Change and Your National Parks – which shows you how climate change is affecting our nation's treasures, what the National Park Service is doing about it, and how you can help.
Regulations, Guidance, and Policy
The Strategic Plan outlines seven goals and four cross-agency strategies. The strategies articulate essential ways of working to accomplish EPA's mission outcomes -- instilling scientific integrity in decision making; considering children's environmental health protection; advancing organizational excellence and workforce equity; and strengthening partnerships, including early, meaningful involvement with Tribes and states and on-the-ground engagement with communities. The plan also includes a suite of measures that will help the agency monitor progress and ensure accountability for achieving its priorities to protect human health and the environment. The plan builds on work already begun under President Biden's Executive Orders 13985: Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government and 14008: Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad.
This Executive Order directs all executive departments and agencies to immediately review and, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, take action to address the promulgation of Federal regulations and other actions during the last 4 years that conflict with these important national objectives, and to immediately commence work to confront the climate crisis. In addition, this EO revokes several EOs including: • EO 13834, except for Section 6. Duties of the Federal Chief Sustainability Officer, Section 7. Duties of Heads of Agencies, and Section 11. General Provisions. • Executive Order 13778 Restoring the Rule of Law, Federalism, and Economic Growth by Reviewing the "Waters of the United States" Rule • Executive Order 13783 Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth • Executive Order 13807 Establishing Discipline and Accountability in the Environmental Review and Permitting Process for Infrastructure Projects
Efficient Federal Operations
17 May 2018; Revoked by: EO 13990, 20 January 2021 – except for Sections 6, 7, and 11
It is the policy of the United States that agencies shall meet such statutory requirements in a manner that increases efficiency, optimizes performance, eliminates unnecessary use of resources, and protects the environment. In implementing this policy, each agency shall prioritize actions that reduce waste, cut costs, enhance the resilience of Federal infrastructure and operations, and enable more effective accomplishment of its mission. This EO rescinds EO 13693.
This CEQ website links to relevant U.S. codes, public laws, guidance, and resources to assist agencies in implementing E.O. 13834.
Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad
January 27, 2021
The EO has three overarching objectives 1) promote safe global temperature, 2) increase climate resilience, and 3) support financial a pathway toward low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development. The EO reinstates the Presidential Memorandum of September 21, 2016 (Climate Change and National Security), establishes the Climate Policy Office within the Executive Office of the President and establishes a National Climate Task Force. In addition, the EO aims to use Federal procurement to support robust climate action including a carbon pollution-free electricity sector, no later than 2035 and clean and zero-emission vehicles for Federal, State, local, and Tribal government fleets.
New as of 18 March 2021, EPA's Climate Change website will guide the public to a range of information, including greenhouse gas emissions data, climate change impacts, scientific reports, and existing climate programs within EPA and across the federal government.
This memorandum establishes a policy that the impacts of climate change must be considered in the development of national security-related doctrine, policies, and plans.
EPA has regional climate change adaptation coordinators who are coordinating regional efforts. This website provides contact information and links to state and tribal homepages for more regionally specific guidance and additional information. Midwest (MW), Northeast (NE), Northwest (NW), and Southwest (SW).
This agreement, signed 12 December 2015, identifies global steps to be taken in order to improve the global air quality.
Agency-Specific Climate Change/Adaptation
Army Directive the establishes requirements for Army instalations in the Strategic Support Area to protect critical assets and ensure mission resilience against threats caused by changing climate and extreme weather.
This Plan builds upon the actions and activities outlined in the DOD 2014 Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap and meets the requirements of Section 211 of EO 14008, Tackling the Climate Crisis At Home and Abroad. The primary purpose of this plan is to integrate climate change adaptation and climate resilience across agency programs, management of real property, public lands and waters, and financial services. The DoD is responding to climate change in two ways: adaptation to enhance resilience to the effects of climate change and mitigation to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Supporting Information and Tools
Databases/Software Tools
This website provides information for citizen scientists and others on how to select and use low-cost, portable air sensor technology and understand results from monitoring activities. The information can help the public learn more about air quality in their communities.
Developed by the Climate Ready Estuaries, this interactive online companion tool takes users through the steps of creating a vulnerability assessment. The tool automatically generates a consequence/probability matrix and formats a simple report based on user input.
Developed by EPA, BASINS is a multi-purpose, environmental analysis system that integrates a geographical information system (GIS), national watershed data, and state-of-the-art watershed modeling tools, including the Hydrologic Simulation Program FORTRAN (HSPF) model, into one package. Specifically, BASINS CAT provides flexible capabilities for creating climate change scenarios allowing users to quickly assess a wide range of what if questions about how weather and climate could affect their systems. BASINS CAT does not provide climate change data for specific regions and watersheds. Combined with the existing capabilities of HSPF for assessing the effects of land-use change and management practices, BASINS CAT can be used to assess the coupled effects of climate and land-use change, and to guide the development of effective management responses.
This DOE tool is an interactive framework that lets users explore the energy and carbon implications of altering the current U.S. energy profile. Using 'what-if' scenarios, users are able to adjust inputs to the electricity generation, buildings, industry and transportation sectors in order to compare outcomes to baseline reference cases.
EPA's tool for calculating your carbon footprint.
This toolkit provides downloadable and customizable outreach materials to use during an extreme heat event.
From the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), this is a web-based source for scientifically sound information and advice on the strengths, limitations, and applications of climate data. Experts who construct, evaluate, and compare climate data sets contribute their perspectives and advice on climate data and analysis methods for a broad community of data users. Users may participate by posting comments, questions, and links. NCAR has designed the tool to act as a living repository for the climate community's collective knowledge and expertise on a broad array of observational datasets and their appropriate use in analyses and model evaluation.
Find resources to help companies, communities, and citizens understand and prepare for the impacts of coastal flooding and sea level rise. Over time, you'll find more datasets, web services, and tools, as well as other themes such as the vulnerability of the food supply and the threats to human health from climate change. Check out the data catalog to browse relevant datasets. If you are looking for a streamlined list, the resources page features datasets and services on coastal vulnerability.
This EPA tool provides a structured approach for water utilities to assess climate change risks and identify adaptation options. CREAT includes information on climate change impacts and associated threats to utility assets and helps the user through an assessment process that helps to generate reports to evaluate different adaptation options. CREAT will evolve to meet utility needs as new resources become available.
This online platform is designed to empower policymakers, researchers, media and other stakeholders with the open climate data, visualizations and resources they need to gather insights on national and global progress on climate change. Climate Watch brings together dozens of datasets for the first time to let users analyze and compare the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement, access historical emissions data, discover how countries can leverage their climate goals to achieve their sustainable development objectives, and use models to map new pathways to a lower carbon, prosperous future.
his USGS tool gives you access to coastal-hazards information along America's coasts. Pick your favorite beach location, type in the name, zoom in, and view potential impacts of extreme storms, historic shoreline changes, and coastal vulnerability to sea-level rise. The tool runs on standard smartphone, tablet, and desktop web browsers, so you can overlay other geographic information easily without the need for GIS programs. Note: The tool may not load correctly for users using Internet Explorer.
This toolkit was developed by the Digital Coast Partnership to help communities understand and address coastal inundation issues. Website components include: • Understand – What is coastal inundation, its causes, and impacts? • Identify – How do I recognize community risks? • Visualize – How can visualizations improve understanding of inundation? • Communicate – What are the best ways to communicate risk and vulnerability information? • Discover – What are others doing to address coastal inundation? This toolkit is an example of how the data, tools, and other information within Digital Coast can be used to address coastal issues. The toolkit provides the context and guidance for connecting the resources in the Digital Coast to the needs of coastal managers.
This tool provides an easy-to-use process for 12 coastal management issues, from climate change to land use planning. People are using the Coastal Planning Advisor to get teams on the same page, facilitate a collaborative process, assign tasks, and write grant proposals.
This is an interactive suite of tools that help users visualize risks to coastal communities and habitats, and help decision makers reduce and mitigate the risks from storms and other hazards like coastal erosion and flooding. This interactive suite of tools allows users to examine storm surge, sea level rise, natural resources, and economic assets. It also allows users to develop risk reduction and restoration solutions. The Coastal Resilience tools build from critical resources provided by many groups and agencies including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), The Department of the Interior's U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Department of the Interior's Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), The Nature Conservancy, and the Natural Capital Project.
This is a web-based interactive tool that integrates over 300 separate data layers, helps decision makers understand the implications of planning and policy decisions on our fragile ecosystems and the communities who depend on goods and services from these ecosystems. EnviroAtlas is designed for people from all levels of government, professionals, researchers, educators, non-governmental organizations, and anyone interested in considering the benefits or impacts of a decision, such as siting a new road or city park. EnviroAtlas uses seven broad benefit categories to organize its information and data on ecosystem services: Clean Air, Clean and Plentiful Water, Natural Hazard Mitigation, Climate Stabilization, Recreation, Culture and Aesthetics, Food, Fuel and Materials, and Biodiversity Conservation.
This tool includes data reported by the largest emitters of greenhouse gases. The data reported by direct emitters provides a "bottom-up" accounting of the major sources of GHG emissions associated with stationary fuel combustion and industrial processes. Well over half of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions are accounted for in this facility level data set, including nearly complete coverage of major emitting sectors such as power plants and refineries.
Developed by NASA, this site presents the vitals signs for the planet. Vital Signs include measurements of arctic sea ice, carbon dioxide, sea level, global temperature, and the size of the ozone hole. The site also discusses evidence, causes, effects, and solutions to climate change. Disclaimer: This material is being kept online for historical purposes. It is no longer being updated.
Developed by NOAA, this online database of literature sources containing information on the effectiveness of green infrastructure to reduce the impacts of coastal hazards, such as inundation and erosion from tropical storms and cyclones, more frequent precipitation events, and sea level rise. The database contains records from a wide range of sources, such as peer-reviewed journals, online tools, and gray literature, and includes information on 32 different coastal green infrastructure types. The green infrastructure techniques referenced cover a full range of approaches to coastal management, including natural, nature-based (e.g., low-impact development), structural, and policies.
Federal contracts for services and supplies are a large source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, which contribute to climate change. The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) estimates that in 2019, federal contractors and subcontractors emitted a total of about 150 million metric tons (MMT) CO2 equivalent (CO2e) associated with federal contracts. The climate-change impact of federal contracts is thus around twice as large as the government's direct impact, which was about 74 MMT CO2e in 2019. In recent decades, many businesses have taken actions to start reducing their GHG emissions. Since 2015, GSA has tracked the GHG reduction commitments of major federal contractors, which are summarized in this report. This data support efforts by federal agencies to reduce GHG emissions via contracts, recognition programs, and other procurement initiatives.
This is an array of 24 climate and water information graphics for our region, covering recent and current precipitation, snowpack, drought, streamflow, reservoir, and ENSO conditions, and climate and ENSO forecasts. These graphics are served directly from their providers so that they are automatically updated in the Dashboard as often as the respective provider updates them. The user can select graphics to enlarge to full size, and move them around the Dashboard to compare with other information.
This tool will help communities along the Great Lakes plan for, and adapt to climate change and changes in lake water levels. The viewer uses high-resolution elevation data, enabling users to display and visualize water levels associated with different lake level scenarios with a high degree of accuracy ranging from zero to six feet above and below average lake level. Users can view elevation models, determine lake water depths at specific locations, examine data confidence, and view societal and economic impacts. More than 4,900 miles of U.S. shoreline ring the Great Lakes, of which 3,800 miles are currently mapped on the Lake Level Viewer. The tool covers areas in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. The tool was developed by the National Ocean Service's Office for Coastal Management as part of its Digital Coast initiative.
This watershed modeling system includes streamlined Hydrologic Simulation Program Fortran (HSPF) algorithms for simulating hydrology, sediment, and general water quality on land as well as a simplified stream transport model. LSPC is derived from the Mining Data Analysis System (MDAS), which was developed by EPA Region 3 and has been widely used for mining applications and TMDLs. A key data management feature of this system is that it uses a Microsoft Access database to manage model data and weather text files for driving the simulation. The system also contains a module to assist in TMDL calculation and source allocations. For each model run, it automatically generates comprehensive text-file output by subwatershed for all land-layers, reaches, and simulated modules, which can be expressed on hourly or daily intervals. Output from LSPC has been linked to other model applications such as EFDC, WASP, and CE-QUAL-W2. LSPC has no inherent limitations in terms of modeling size or model operations. The Microsoft Visual C++ programming architecture allows for seamless integration with modern-day, widely available software such as Microsoft Access and Excel.
This is a climate-visualization website tool from the Interior Department's U.S. Geological Survey. The tool gives citizens and resource managers the opportunity to look at climate-driven impacts on watersheds and map projected changes at the local, regional, state and watershed levels. The tool includes the historical and future climate projections from 30 of the downscaled models for two of the RCP emission scenarios, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. The tool also allows users to visualize projected changes in climate (maximum and minimum air temperature and precipitation) and the water balance (snow water equivalent, runoff, soil water storage and evaporative deficit) for any state, county and USGS Hydrologic Units (HUC).
This is the National Ocean Council's portal for data, information, and tools to support people engaged in planning for the future of the ocean, our coasts, and the Great Lakes. The goal is to be a one-stop hub to support planners and to provide useful information to the public.
This forecasting tool simulates how water moves throughout the nation's rivers and streams generating hourly forecasts for the entire river network. Initially, the model will benefit flash flood forecasts in headwater areas and provide water forecast information for many areas that currently aren't covered. As the model evolves, it will provide 'zoomed-in,' street-level forecasts and inundation maps to improve flood warnings, and will expand to include water quality forecasts.
This is a searchable online database that provides a gateway to climate information for the Eastern US. It summarizes needs for climate information as articulated in publications; identifies available data, products and services; and captures planned and on-going projects. The goal is to offer a tool to search for regionally relevant climate information, and to facilitate collaborative opportunities across the network of climate-focused programs and partners in the Eastern US.
This website provides ready access to federally maintained geospatial data, services and applications. The website makes it possible for users to create customized maps using federal geospatial data and common geographic maps. They also can integrate their own data into the maps, and share the maps through Web browsers and mobile applications. The platform was developed by the Federal Geographic Data, an interagency committee chaired by the Secretary of the Interior. The panel also includes members from the Office of Management and Budget, Environmental Protection Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Examples include NexRad, Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite Radiometer Data, Sea Surface Temperatures Analysis, and others.
This web portal was developed to serve as a coordinated, multi-agency regional framework to map and store continuous stream temperature locations and data for New England, Mid Atlantic, and Great Lakes States. NorEaST consists of: a mapper where the public can view locations and metadata for current and historic stream temperature monitoring sites; a database where data stewards can store and manage their data; and Web services to connect, communicate, and serve data for use in analysis and applications.
This is an open-source tool which aids users in accessing and interpreting complex climate data. OpenClimateGIS serves users who are already familiar with GIS systems, enabling them to access data for specific regions and sectors and providing access to recent data such as outputs from climate models.
This website is a gateway to a broad range of information related to climate in the Pacific Islands. It includes summaries of programs, projects, and activities, as well as products and services. Formed through the collaboration of and contributions from a family of agencies, institutions, and organizations, this website is intended to serve as a shared resource for research scientists, service providers, and decision-makers. The website provides access to a broad range of region specific information related to historical hindcasts and multi-decadal projections. For example, users can search, by region and/or climate variable, and find a list of relevant products along with a brief summary and a direct link to each. This developmental website was put together by representatives of the NOAA National Climatic Data Center working in support of the Pacific Climate Information System. For more information on the site, visit:
The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change has released this online idea database of actions on adaptation to help businesses and communities adapt to climate change. The adaptation practices listed in the database include ensuring access to safe and clean drinking water, promoting resilience of business operations to disasters, providing technologies or services to help vulnerable communities adapt to climate change impacts, increasing agricultural yields in climate-vulnerable areas, developing climate-friendly goods and services, and "climate proofing" the supply chains of companies.
An online map that provides easy access to localized scenarios of projected changes in annual total precipitation, precipitation intensity, annual average temperature, 100-year storm events, and sea-level rise from EPA's Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool. To explore local climate change projection data across the United States, simply zoom in on a location of interest or type a location into the search field of the map. Climate change projection data within this map is provided by grid cell, illustrated as a square grid with 1/2-degree resolution, approximately 32 x 32 miles, for the United States.
This portal provides a centralized, comprehensive catalog of observational networks associated with aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in the southeastern United States that may be influenced by climate change. The Portal is in the first phase of development and is being actively populated with new program and site information. The Portal was developed as part of the Southeast Climate Science Center research project, Assessment of Terrestrial and Aquatic Monitoring Programs in the Southeastern United States, which aims to support the efforts of multiple federal, state, and other organizations in the development of a comprehensive and integrated assessment of monitoring programs associated with atmospheric, stream, and terrestrial ecosystems.
States and communities around the country have begun to prepare for the climate changes that are already underway. This planning process typically results in a document called an adaptation plan. This site provides a map that highlights the status of state adaptation efforts. By clicking on a state you can view a summary of its progress to date and to access its full profile page. State profile pages include a detailed breakdown of each state's adaptation work and links to local adaptation plans and resources.
Use this tool to evaluate the costs and emissions benefits of various compliance options to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) from the power sector for compliance with the rule. A new version of this calculator was made available for download on 1 February 2016.
This is an interactive map that illustrates the current worst-case storm surge and inundation scenarios on the American Gulf and Atlantic coasts, including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The map combines data layers from FEMA 100 and 500 year flood maps as well as NOAA's Sea, Lake, and Overland Surge from Hurricanes (SLOSH) and National Hurricane Center's coastal county hurricane strike maps.
SWMM is widely used throughout the world and is considered the "gold standard" in the design of urban wet-weather flow pollution abatement approaches. It is a dynamic hydrology-hydraulic water quality simulation model used for single event or long-term (continuous) simulation of runoff quantity and quality from primarily urban areas and allows users to include any combination of low impact development (LID)/green infrastructure controls to determine their effectiveness in managing stormwater and sewer overflows. SWMM-CAT is an easy to use add-on that applies monthly climate adjustment factors onto historical precipitation and temperature data to consider potential impacts of future climate on stormwater.
Tethys is an international community unified with a common interest in the environmental effects of wind and marine renewable energy. The website is a conglomeration of useful features meant to support researchers, developers, regulators, and stakeholders. The website has five major topics Knowledge Base, Map Viewer, User Profiles, Connections, and Broadcasts.
The USGCRP recently announced the online availability of a suite of scenarios on climate, sea level rise, land use and land cover, and other conditions. These scenarios were developed as input to the U.S. National Climate Assessment. The scenarios were developed by multiple agencies in consultation with a National Climate Assessment working group whose members include both university-based and federal research scientists.
Developed by EPA, this an on-line tool that provides a flexible capability for creating user-determined climate change scenarios for assessing the potential impacts of climate change on sediment loading to streams using the USDA s Water Erosion Prediction Project (WEPP) Model. In combination with the existing capabilities of WEPP for assessing the effectiveness of management practices, WEPPCAT also can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of strategies for managing the impacts of climate change.
Created by the EPA National Water Program, this is a directory of regional climate change adaptation programs of federal natural resource agencies to be used as a tool to strengthen coordination to assist in preparing for a changing climate. The first section of this directory provides a short summary of the various federal natural resource agency programs that are deployed on a regional basis to support climate change adaptation, as well as a map of the region or area served by the program. The second section of this directory is organized by the eight regions described in the Third National Climate Assessment released May 6, 2014 by the U.S. Global Change Research Program.
This section of EPA's Climate Ready Estuaries Coastal Toolkit provides information on climate change adaptation options and other resources that can help coastal managers develop adaptation strategies.
Materials management strategies reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with waste, materials, and products through a lifecycle and systems approach. This resources is a materials management toolkit of: Climate Protection Actions, example Climate Action Plans, new approaches to GHG Inventories, measurement tools, and links to additional resources.
A virtual library of guidebooks, adaptation plans and case studies, including a map search feature. The site also hosts a directory of organizations and climate change professionals, and climate change tools.
This website serves as a hub for recent climate-related work at the Academies. It highlights climate studies that have been produced by committees of leading scientists and other experts convened by the Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate and numerous other entities within the National Research Council. At this site, you will find brief summaries, booklets, videos, and other resources related to these reports. You will also find information about significant ongoing climate activities across the Academies.
Use this toolkit to lower the greenhouse gas emissions from the purchases of your public institution. The toolkit was developed to help government target their efforts on the most significant GHG emissions in their institution's supply chain, or the production of goods and services. You can learn from the efforts of other organizations to help identify high-leverage categories, or you can conduct your own survey. This toolkit also provides guidance on specific purchasing strategies on how to reduce an organization's carbon footprint.
Sponsored by the U.S. DOT, the clearinghouse is designed as a one-stop source of information on transportation and climate change issues. It includes information on greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories, analytic methods and tools, GHG reduction strategies, potential impacts of climate change on transportation infrastructure, and approaches for integrating climate change considerations into transportation decision making.
The U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) has created this website featuring an easy-to-access collection of resources to help federal agencies with planning and implementation for climate change adaptation. Resources include relevant federal executive orders and strategic plans, selected technical reports on adaptation research, frameworks and other information to help agencies adapt their operations to changing climate conditions, and overview reports for higher-level decision makers.
Data on this website are compiled from agencies' latest Annual Energy Data Reports and are included in the Annual Reports to Congress on Federal Government Energy Management. The website includes: data tables of federal agency energy and water consumption; interactive graphics associated with most data tables; energy costs by end-use sector and efficiency investment information; progress toward key goals outlined in the National Energy Conservation Policy Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 8253-8258); Energy Policy Act of 2005 (42 U.S.C. 15852); and historical data tables of agency energy use and costs by facility and mobility sectors by energy type beginning in fiscal year (FY) 1975.
The nonpartisan Georgetown Climate Center seeks to advance effective climate, energy, and transportation policies in the United States--policies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help communities adapt to climate change. The Georgetown Climate Center is part of Georgetown Law in Washington, D.C. The Center also seeks to ensure that national climate and energy policy is informed by lessons from existing state efforts and that national policies maintain an ongoing role for state innovation and implementation.
The Division of Earth and Life Sciences of the NAS publishes climate and weather related publications. Both finalized publication and in-progress studies are available.
This Toolkit provides scientific tools, information, and expertise to help people manage their climate-related risks and opportunities, and improve their resilience to extreme events. The site is designed to serve interested citizens, communities, businesses, resource managers, planners, and policy leaders at all levels of government. The site includes: case studies, a visualization tool, maps, pointers to training courses, catalog of freely available tools, and a five-step process you can follow to initiate, plan, and implement projects to become more resilient to climate-related hazards.
CICERO is an independent research center associated with the University of Oslo, Norway. CICERO conducts research on and provides information and expert advice about national and international issues related to climate change and climate policy.
The Climate Change Resource Center (CCRC), hosted by the U.S. Forest Service, is a reference Web site for resource managers and decisionmakers who need information and tools to address climate change in planning and project implementation. The CCRC addresses the manager's question "What can I do about climate change?" by providing information about basic climate sciences and compiling knowledge resources and support for adaptation and mitigation strategies. The site offers educational information, including basic science modules that explain climate and climate impacts, decision-support models, maps, simulations, case studies, and toolkits.
This program provides parks with the tools and resources to address climate change. Member parks around the country are leading the way in the effort to protect our Nation's natural and cultural resources to ensure their preservation for future generations.
International collaboration between Canada, Mexico and the United States on environmental issues of common interest. The CEC's cooperative work program focuses on shared North American environmental priorities identified by the governments of Canada, Mexico and the United States.
EROS Center is a remotely sensed data management, systems development, and research field center for the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) Climate and Land Use Change Mission Area. Scientists, managers, and technical users from around the world, including the staff at EROS, use data from the archives for a variety of data applications and research programs. For information on how to search for and order data from EROS, click on the Find Data tab.
The GHG Institute is a non-profit organization founded in 2007 to build the GHG management infrastructure of the future, with a focus on training and supporting a global community of qualified professionals to work on GHG measurement, accounting, auditing and management.
The IPCC is a scientific intergovernmental body set up by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). It was established to provide the decision-makers and others interested in climate change with an objective source of information about climate change. The IPCC doesn't conduct any research nor does it monitor climate related data or parameters. Its role is to assess on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the latest scientific, technical and socio-economic literature produced worldwide relevant to the understanding of the risk of human-induced climate change, its observed and projected impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation.
A network of organizations working with the National Climate Assessment (NCA) to engage producers and users of climate assessment information across the United States.
U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research climate change program website.
EPA's SmartWay program provides information and tracking abilities for federal agencies sustainable transportation (freight and cargo). Agencies can download and review data on the carriers they are considering as part of their best value determination as well as obtain sustainable data information for their agencies transportation activities using SmartWay haulers. Data includes carbon accounting and reporting.
USGCRP coordinates and integrates federal research on changes in the global environment and their implications for society. Thirteen federal departments and agencies participate in the USGCRP. The site provides access to up-to-date research and publications concerning global warming as well as regional and sector climate information.
Website of the UN for activities under the UNFCCC and Kyoto Protocol, including the Conference of Parties (COP) meetings (Cancun 2010). The website contains introductory and in-depth publications on the science of climate change, adaptation, mitigation, and international cooperation and treaties.
The U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) is a Federal program mandated by Congress to coordinate Federal research and investments in understanding the forces shaping the global environment, both human and natural, and their impacts on society. USGCRP facilitates collaboration and cooperation across its 13 Federal member agencies to advance understanding of the changing Earth system and maximize efficiencies in Federal global change research.
The Climate Adaptation Science Centers are the Department of the Interiors mechanism for assisting agency land managers understand impacts and strategically adapt to changing conditions.
An EPA-led partnership of western cities and states that are developing and sharing ways to integrate lifecycle materials management policies and practices into climate actions.
Lessons Learned
Award Winners
CHP systems can qualify for the ENERGY STAR(r) CHP Award, if they demonstrate considerable fuel and emissions savings over comparable, state-of-the-art separate heat and power generation. Information on current and past winners is provided as well as an overview of the application process.
Case Studies
The purpose of this paper is to identify research needs for all aspects of the research-to-decision making pathway that will help us understand and mitigate the health effects of climate change, as well as ensure that we choose the healthiest and most efficient approaches to climate change adaptation. The paper is authored by the Interagency Working Group on Climate Change and Health (IWGCCH) an ad hoc group formed by participating federal agencies and organizations at the invitation of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
This May 2015 NPS report is focused on the challenge of rising sea levels on our national parks. To begin addressing these issues, the Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines (PSDS) at Western Carolina University (WCU) has partnered with NPS to begin an assessment of the level of exposure that park owned assets will face during a period of rising sea level. The first phase of this collaborative project between WCU and NPS has focused on identifying NPS assets that may be threatened by a future 1 m rise in sea level within 40 coastal units. A 1 m rise in sea level can be expected to occur in the next 100 to 150 years. With over $40 Billion in Assets exposed to sea level and associated storm impacts, this value will increase when the next round of 30 more parks in the National Capitol and Alaska regions are included.
This April 2012 guide provides federal, state, tribal and other natural resource managers with tools to more effectively address the complexities and uncertainties involved in natural resource management, especially under challenging conditions such as climate change. The Applications Guide includes case studies ranging from river flow management and protecting migratory birds to siting renewable energy projects. These are drawn from four areas important to Interior and its partners: climate change, water resources, energy, and human impacts on the landscape. The examples show the breadth of adaptive management applications at different scales and different levels of complexity.
The EPA workbook provides much needed guidance for conducting risk-based climate change vulnerability assessments and developing adaptation action plans. It is an ideal tool for organizations that manage places, watersheds or coastal environments.
EPA report that shows the most severe harms from climate change fall disproportionately upon underserved communities who are least able to prepare for, and recover from, heat waves, poor air quality, flooding, and other impacts. EPA's analysis indicates that racial and ethnic minority communities are particularly vulnerable to the greatest impacts of climate change. This report is one of the most advanced environmental justice studies to date that looks at how projected climate change impacts may be distributed across the American public.
Climate-Smart Conservation provides guidance to natural resource managers and conservation professionals for carrying out climate adaptation and incorporating climate considerations into their work. The guide provides an overview of how climate change may affect species and ecosystems, offers general principles for successful climate adaptation, and outlines a set of "key characteristics" of climate-smart conservation.
This guide examines how climate change is already affecting the nation's wildlife and habitats and addresses how natural resource managers will need to prepare for and adapt to these unprecedented changes. Developed by a collaboration of experts from federal, state, and non-governmental institutions, the guide offers practical steps for crafting conservation actions to enhance the resilience of the natural ecosystems on which wildlife and people depend. This publication was developed by a workgroup convened by the National Wildlife Federation and included individuals from: Desert Research Institute, EcoAdapt, U.S. EPA, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Geos Institute, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, NOAA, National Park Service, Point Blue Conservation Science, The Nature Conservancy, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Geological Survey, and Wildlife Conservation Society.
This September 2015 NPS report includes 24 case studies of how NPS is guiding adaptation to climate change in coastal environments. Faced with rising sea levels, the National Park Service is moving forward with strategies and taking action in parks so that, as the climate changes and affects parks, we can continue to serve visitors and provide stewardship and protection of natural and cultural resources. The case studies in this report illustrate some examples of NPS's strategies and actions.
This January 2017 EPA publication outlines more than 70 policies local government officials, staff, and boards can consider to help adapt to current or projected flooding and extreme precipitation, sea level rise and storm surge, extreme heat, drought, and wildfire. These policies range from modest adjustments to wholesale changes, giving communities a range of options to consider depending on their needs and context. The publication includes examples of communities implementing these policies, resources for more information, and metrics that communities could use taken from three community-scale sustainability rating systems.
Dated February 2014, this report for the U.S. Department of Energy summarizes the lessons learned from 16 government, educational and nonprofit groups that received grants to advance the deployment of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs). Participants in projects across 24 states and the District of Columbia assessed the barriers to and opportunities for PEV deployment in their regions and prepared and executed readiness plans. The report is designed to be an accessible primer to the key issues in PEV deployment and a roadmap to the detailed research, toolkits, and sample language for local policies contained in the readiness plans.
This document, prepared for the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Headquarters and released January 2017, is a desktop workbook to assist Installation planners analyze and develop viable action alternative strategies to address challenges they face due to climate change. Appendices F and G are also attached.
This December 2014 guide is intended to address a wide range of health care facility vulnerabilities. It spans risks related to buildings, utilities and infrastructure, including IT infrastructure, supply chain issues, the needs of staff, and the role of the healthcare facility in the broader community. It is intended to be helpful to a broad spectrum of facilities from complex university hospitals to outpatient service providers and nursing facilities. This guide was developed as part of the President's Climate Action Plan by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
Developed by The Nature Conservancy's California Program, this report evaluates nine green infrastructure case studies in California and makes a case for conservation as an effective tool to reduce risks of a changing climate. Each case study improves flood or coastal protection, provides habitat and preserves or restores the natural dynamics between water and land. The report reviews the available data on the costs and benefits of each case and, where possible, compares this information with the costs and benefits of a gray alternative at the same site.
Communities across the United States are anticipating, planning, and preparing for the impacts of climate change. This EPA website provides examples of municipal, state, or tribal communities that have taken action. Case studies can be viewed according to the area of interest, geographic region, or level of government. Use the search function to view cases according to key words or areas of interest not provided on the web page (Example: Sea Level Rise, Drought, or Green Infrastructure).
The U.S. Army has published the Army Climate Resilience Handbook (ACRH) for use by installation planners to assess climate risk as they write or revise a diversity of plans, including real property master plans, Integrated Natural Resource Management Plans, Installation Energy and Water Plans, and emergency management plans. The handbook is organized around a four-step, risk-informed planning process with the goal of increasing climate resilience. An integral part of the process is the on-line Army Climate Assessment Tool (ACAT). The ACAT contains information on individual installations that planners can use to determine current extreme weather and climate change effects, infrastructure, and assets that are vulnerable to these effects, and adaptation measures that can be used to increase an installation's climate resilience.
Coastal Zones
This handbook summarizes the current state of National Park Service (NPS) climate adaptation and key approaches currently in practice or considered for climate change adaptation in coastal areas in order to guide adaptation planning in coastal parks. The chapters focus on policy, planning, cultural resources, natural resources, facility management, and communication/education. The handbook highlights processes, tools and examples that are applicable to many types of NPS plans and decisions. One chapter includes a case study of Hurricane Sandy response and recovery strategies including changes to infrastructure. Another chapter features practical coastal infrastructure information including cost per unit length of constructed features (including seawalls, beach nourishment, and nature-based features). The level of detail varies by topic depending on the state of research and practice in that field.
This 2015 guide introduces climate change and adaptation planning to water sector utilities by outlining climate challenges based on type and geographic region. The Guide provides suggested adaptation strategies for system impacts associated with climate change challenges such as drought, water quality degradation, ecosystem changes, and changes in service demand and use. New features of the 2015 edition include: information based on updated models data from the U.S. Global Change Research Program 2014 Report, sustainability briefs addressing green infrastructure, energy management, and water demand management, and updated water utility climate adaptation case studies.
This EPA initiative provides drinking water, wastewater and stormwater utilities with practical tools, training and technical assistance needed to increase resilience to extreme weather events. Through a comprehensive planning process, CRWU assists water utilities by promoting a clear understanding of potential long-term adaptation options.
This EPA website provides short descriptions have been developed of innovative practices that state water agencies are currently implementing to reduce their vulnerability to climate-related impacts and to build resilience to climate change. These select state practices can serve as useful models for other state agencies seeking to make water programs more resilient to climate change. In addition, water resource planners and decision-makers from local and tribal governments and other entities may find these practices to be helpful. The practices described are the result of a collaborative effort by the Association of Clean Water Administrators (ACWA), Association of State Drinking Water Administrators (ASDWA), Association of State Wetland Managers (ASWM), and the EPA Office of Water.
Training, Presentations, and Briefings
Offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), this course will provide participants with an understanding of the value proposition for GHG management, fundamental accounting principles, disclosure, verification and reporting frameworks, and common practices for leveraging GHG data.
Offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), this course will provide a basic overview of sea level rise in the context of climate change, including the basics of temporal and regional changes, the forcing mechanisms for sea level rise in the past and projections for the future. Attendees will gain a fundamental understanding of the observing systems used to measure sea level change, and how various government agencies are planning for the impacts of sea level rise. Learners will also get an overview of the concept of risk management in the face of sea level rise, looking at various adaptation strategies, and discussing the concept of how to build resilience. Attendees will participate in an instructor-led discussion on what steps they might take to help mitigate impacts of sea level rise in their communities.
This is the first education module in a series of three developed by the USDA's Climate Change Resources Center. It gives a brief overview of the climate system, greenhouse gases, climate models, current climate change impacts, and future projections. There is a 14-question activity at the end of the module, and users who complete the activity will receive a printable certificate with their name and the date completed. The expected time commitment for this module is about 20 minutes, plus the activity. Time spent exploring the many outward links and interactive features within the module will be at the user's discretion.
The U.S. FWS is offering this course designed to guide conservation and resource management practitioners through two essential elements in the design of climate adaptation plans and provide guidance in identifying which species or habitats are likely to be most strongly affected by projected changes. Vulnerability assessments are a critical tool in undertaking any climate change planning or implementation.
The Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO) is offering a series of 2-day training academies to enable attendees to complete all required training CCO Training Bootcamps (including electives) for the Climate Governance Certificate. These academies will provide curriculum on topics including understanding climate science and variability, identifying climate hazards and conducting vulnerability assessments, basics of greenhouse gas accounting, the food-water-energy nexus, and fundamental governance and stakeholder engagement strategies.
This training series consists of three modules designed to help create a Great Lakes region that is "climate ready." Toward this end, these modules provide stakeholders and decision makers with clear information about Great Lakes climate, as well as what we need to adapt to, why, and how. This project was sponsored by the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network and the NOAA Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Team.
Offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), this course guides participants through the process steps required to establish and implement a GHG reduction goal. The instructors will provide brief case studies highlighting how their respective organizations adapted process elements to meet their business objectives. Key questions that will be addressed include determining objectives, establishing a baseline, establishing a business as usual forecast, setting GHG reduction targets, selling to senior management, and how to devise a viable implementation plan. The instructors will also provide direction on applicable tools and references, and they will lead discussion on how to overcome some of the most challenging obstacles.
This EPA webinar includes a presentation about EPA's "Flood Resilience Guide for Water and Wastewater Utilities" which has a user-friendly layout, embedded videos, and flood maps. The webinar also includes information on "EPA's Drought Response and Recovery Guide" which brings together lessons learned from small- to medium sized drinking water systems across the country that have dealt with drought. The guide provides water utilities with best practices and key actions that can be taken when planning for, responding to, or recovering from drought, and helps utilities dealing with drought impacts by outlining practical actions that can increase their overall drought resilience. This webinar was originally presented as part of the EPA Small Systems Monthly webinar on 25 September 2018.
Energy, water and food/agriculture systems are inextricably linked. Understanding the intersection of these three systems is important since a disruption can present serious risks to an organization and lead to cascading impacts. This session will cover the linkages of these systems as well as the impacts, risks, and opportunities associated with the energy, water and agriculture/food nexus, and how it relates to greenhouse gases. Bootcamp instructors will provide examples of how these interdependencies can play out in a warming world. This course is offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO).
Offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), in this bootcamp participants will receive an introduction to available community-relevant information sources and tools, climate data sets, and a template to help assess an organization's (or region's) climate risks and current resilience. Attendees will learn how to define climate-related hazards, recognize differential impacts of those hazards, identify existing and future risks, fully understand their current vulnerabilities and strengths, identify and utilize stakeholder partnerships to inform the decision making process, and evaluate the most critical vulnerabilities for their organization.
Offered through support from the Nature Conservancy, this curriculum, consists of three, self-paced, online courses, provides a basic level of understanding of the basics of climate change, deforestation and forest degradation, and the REDD concept.
The NWS Climate Services Division Seminar Series was created to build capacity in NWS field offices on climate-related topics. Speakers are chosen based on suggestions from NWS field offices for topics of interest. Topics previously addressed included: sea level rise, global warming issues, new tools/software, and communicating climate change to the public.
Achieving organizational climate strategies requires a broad understanding of the legal/policy landscape of and related to climate change and energy. Offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), this course will help attendees think through how the current legal/policy landscape and stakeholder perspectives relate to an organization's interests and to inform its practices.
This training module is intended to increase water resource professionals' understanding of the causes of climate change, its potential impacts on water resources, and the challenges that water resource professionals face. The module also describes how federal, state, tribal, and local governments and communities are working to make the United States more resilient to the impacts of climate. The 45-minute training is part of the EPA Watershed Academy Web certificate program.
Offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), this boot camp will provide participants with an overview of the current state of knowledge about Earth's climate system, how climate is projected to change this century, practical implications of these projections for different socioeconomic sectors, and the basics how effective communication and engagement can help mobilize your organization for action. Attendees will learn how to use climate projections to identify climate related risks and vulnerabilities, and understand how science-based information and tools are being used for strategic planning. Participants will go through an interactive demonstration to apply what they have learned throughout the course.
Offered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), this course gives participants an understanding of current climatic trends and shorter-term consequences that is critical to ensuring the stability and long-term success of an organization. Participants will learn about longer-term natural climate trends as a baseline for understanding current human disruptions to the climate system.
Conferences and Events
October 2021
The Resilient Nation Partnership Network, FEMA and NASA are proud to host the 6th Annual Forum on "Alliances for Climate Action" throughout October. The virtual series will occur every Wednesday (Oct. 6, 13, 20, 27) from 12 to 2 p.m. ET. Hear from more than 30 thought leaders across resilience, climate, equity and more as we dive into a different topic each week.
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