Climate Change in New York State: Updating the 2011 ClimAID Climate Risk Information NYSERDA Report

Prepared for the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), this 2014 report updates the climate risks analyzed in the agency's 2011 ClimAID adaptation report providing improved climate change impact projections for New York State’s temperature, precipitation, sea level rise, and extreme weather events. This information, essential for advancing the state’s climate impact and adaptation assessments, and is a refinement of the 2011 ClimAID projections, amplifying the message of the original report. 

The 2011 Integrated Assessment for Effective Climate Change Adaptation Strategies in New York State (also known as "ClimAID") describes climate change impacts and adaptation strategies for eight sectors in New York including water resources, coastal zones, ecosystems, agriculture, energy, transportation, public health and telecommunications. This updated assessment of climate impacts to the state provides more accurate and localized data for refining decision-making and adaptation planning. 

Compared to the 2011 report, this 2014 Update uses  improved, higher-resolution climate models (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5, CMIP5) and more flexible emissions scenarios (Representative Concentration Pathways, RCPs) from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report (IPCC AR5). With more powerful computing, the 2014 updated projections are based on 35 climate models, compared to the original 16 used in the 2011 report. The results of the advanced analyses presented in this update are generally consistent with the 2011 ClimAID projections with the changes in updated values considered small relative to the uncertainties involved in long-term projections.

Quantitative and qualitative projections are provided to the year 2100 for temperature, precipitation, sea level, and extreme events, such as heat waves, flooding, and storm surge in this update - (the 2011 ClimAID Report projected to the 2080s).

As described in the report: 

  • Sea level along New York’s coast is projected to rise by 3-8 inches by the 2020s, 9-21 inches by the 2050s, 14-39 inches by the 2080s, and 18-50 inches by 2100.
  • Average annual temperatures across New York State are projected to increase by 2.0–3.4°F by the 2020s, 4.1–6.8°F by the 2050s, 5.3–10.1°F by the 2080s, and 5.8-11.9°F by 2100.
  • Regional precipitation is projected to increase by 1-8% by the 2020s, 3-12% by the 2050s, 4-15% by the 2080s and 1-21% by 2100, with these annual changes considered small relative to the increasing year-to-year variability of precipitation patterns. 

Northern parts of the state are expected to experience the greatest increases in both temperature and precipitation changes. Additionally, the total number of hot days and frequency and duration of heat waves is expected to increase. Extreme cold events are expected to decrease. The frequency, intensity, and duration of both extreme precipitation events and coastal flooding are expected to increase. Updated prediction values for these extreme events are presented in Tables 5 and 6 of this report.


Publication Date: September 2014

Authors or Affiliated Users:

  • Radley Horton
  • Daniel Bader
  • Arthur DeGaetano
  • William Solecki

Related Organizations:

Related Resources:

Resource Category:

Resource Types:

  • Assessment
  • Climate science

States Affected:


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