This page provides an overview of the steps New York is taking to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

In August 2009, Governor David Paterson established the New York State Climate Action Council (NYSCAC) and directed the NYSCAC to create a climate action plan (Executive Order 24). In November 2010, the NYSCAC released a 428-page Interim Report including both measures to reduce emissions and prepare for the impacts of climate change. The Interim Report was released for public comment; but a final plan has not been published and the state has not officially endorsed the adaptation recommendations included in the Interim Report.

Chapter 11 of the 2010 plan covers the work of the Adaptation Technical Working Group and several sub-groups. It includes goals in a number of sectors: agriculture, coastal zones, ecosystems, energy, public health, transportation, telecommunications and information infrastructure, and water. The plan identifies the climate impacts in each sector and outlines goals for preparing for these impacts. The plan also assesses the potential costs, timing considerations, co-benefits, unintended consequences, and environmental justice considerations related to these goals.

In addition to the 2010 plan, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) commissioned an assessment of New York’s vulnerability to climate change. The result, Responding to Climate Change in New York State: ClimAID Integrated Assessment for Effective Climate Change Adaptation - Synthesis Report, was published in November 2011. In addition to the multi-sectoral approach of the NYCAC and the ClimAID assessment, New York responded to the impact of Hurricanes Sandy and Irene, and Tropical Storm Lee by studying the vulnerability of the state’s critical infrastructure. The state is also home to a number of the winning projects selected as part of the Rebuild by Design competition.

On November 15, 2012, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo convened the NYS 2100 Commission, asked the Commission to examine and evaluate key vulnerabilities in the state’s critical infrastructure systems, and charged it with developing recommendations to improve the resilience of those systems. The Commission released its report titled NYS 2100 Commission: Recommendations to Improve the Strength and Resilience of the Empire State's Infrastructure in January 2013. In a second phase of research, the Georgetown Climate Center will update this assessment of New York's progress to include goals completed under both the 2010 and 2013 plans.

New York City is also a leader in preparing for climate impacts. The city originally released PlaNYC in 2007, setting goals to both reduce carbon emissions and reduce the city's vulnerability to climate change. In 2014, the city released Progress Report 2014. This document assess the city's progress against goals identified in PlaNYC. Former Mayor Bloomberg appointed a Climate Change Adaptation Task Force in 2008, charged with developing adaptation strategies to secure the city's infrastructure from the effects of climate change. The Task Force is made up of city agencies, New York state agencies, and other stakeholders. In addition, in 2015 the New York City Panel on Climate Change, also formed in 2008, published a summary of its work since 2013. That summary, Building the Knowledge Base for Climate Resiliency, reviews climate projections, suggests metrics for measuring resilience, and makes recommendations for reducing vulnerability.

New York State is in the process of implementing the goals set forth in the 2010 plan and the state’s other adaptation initiatives.

(Research last updated June 30, 2014; Click here for a description of our methodology.)

The Georgetown Climate Center’s State Adaptation Progress Tracker, which tracks the progress of states in implementing their adaptation plans, is supported by the MacArthur Foundation. 

View State Adaptation Plan Status
View All Completed State Goals

Sector Adaptation Goals in Progress or Completed

Get a quick view of the progress New York is making to prepare for climate change in different areas below. The first number includes goals in progress or completed in New York's state adaptation plan.  The second number reflects the total number of goals in each area.  For a more detailed look at progress click here or click on one of the sector buttons below. 

Completed Goals from the Agriculture Plan

Completed Goals from the Biodiversity Plan

Completed Goals from the Coasts/Oceans Plan

Completed Goals from the Emergency Preparedness Plan

Completed Goals from the Infrastructure Plan

Completed Goals from the Public Health Plan

Completed Goals from the Water Plan



State Law and Policy

Resource Name Resource Type Date
New York Regulation - Part 490 - Projected Sea-Level Rise Law and Governance February 2017
New York State Water Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2015 Law and Governance March 31, 2015
New York Community Risk and Resiliency Act (S06617B) Law and Governance September 22, 2014
New York Smart Growth Public Infrastructure Act (2010) Law and Governance September 29, 2010
New York State Executive Order 24: Establishing a Goal to Reduce GHG Emissions 80% by 2050 and Preparing a Climate Action Plan Law and Governance August 6, 2009

State Agency Plans

Resource Name Sector(s) Covered Date
New York Metropolitan Transportation Council’s Plan 2040: A Shared Vision for Sustainable Growth Transportation September 4, 2013
Guidance for New York Rising Community Reconstruction Plans Coastal, Emergency preparedness, Land use and built environment, Frontline Communities 2013
Mainstreaming Climate Change Adaptation Strategies into New York State Department of Transportation’s Operations: Final Report Transportation October 31, 2011

Local and Regional Plans

Resource Name Date
Next Generation - New York City Housing Authority Sustainability Agenda April 22, 2016
Northern Manhattan Climate Action Plan, New York City July 27, 2015
One New York: The Plan for a Strong and Just City (One NYC) April 21, 2015
Building the Knowledge Base for Climate Resiliency: New York City Panel on Climate Change 2015 Report February 16, 2015
A Stronger, More Resilient New York June 11, 2013
Albany, New York Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment and Adaptation Plan 2013
PlaNYC 2030 - A Greener Greater New York April 2011
Vision 2020: New York City Comprehensive Waterfront Plan March 2011
NYC Green Infrastructure Plan - A Sustainable Strategy for Clean Waterways (New York City) September 2010
Rising Waters: Helping Hudson River Communities Adapt to Climate Change Scenario Planning 2010-2030, Final Report 2009
Sustainable Stormwater Management Plan 2008 for New York City December 2008
City of New York Climate Change Assessment and Action Plan (NYC Department of Environmental Protection) May 2008

More Featured Resources

Resource Name Resource Category Date
New York Climate Change Science Clearinghouse: Tools to Help Communities Prepare for Extreme Weather Data and tools May 6, 2016
Rebuild by Design: Big U -- Transportation Elements Planning June 2014
Rebuild by Design: Hunts Point Lifelines -- Transportation Elements Planning June 2014
New York City Building Resiliency Task Force Summary Report Planning June 2013
NYS 2100 Commission Recommendations to Improve the Strength and Resilience of the Empire State's Infrastructure Planning January 11, 2013
Assessing the Vulnerability of Key Habitats in New York: A Foundation for Climate Adaptation Planning Assessments 2013
New York State Sea Level Rise Task Force Report to the Legislature Assessments December 31, 2010

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