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Risky Business: The Economic Risks of Climate Change to the United States, Final report

June 24, 2014

‘Risky Business’ estimates the impact of projected changes in temperature, precipitation, sea levels, and storm activity on the U. S. economy.   The report presents a new approach to understanding climate risks for key U. S. business sectors, and provides business leaders with a framework for measuring and mitigating their own exposure to climate risk. The Risky Business research focused on damage to coastal property and infrastructure from rising sea levels and increased storm surge, climate-driven changes in agricultural production and energy demand, and the impact of higher temperatures on labor productivity and public health.

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National Climate Assessment

May 6, 2014

The U. S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) has a legal mandate to conduct a National Climate Assessment (NCA) every four years, the third and most recent of which was released in May 2014. Summarizing current and future climate change impacts across the nation, the NCA is the most comprehensive assessment of climate change impacts ever conducted in the U. S.   The new report is presented on a highly interactive website, with a stunning visual presentation, intended to fully engage the general public along with decision-makers.

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3rd National Climate Assessment: Indigenous Peoples, Lands, and Resources

2014

A chapter of the Third National Climate Assessment, this report provides an overview of the challenges that indigenous peoples in the United States face due to climate change, as well as the opportunities they have to prepare. Climate change will undermine indigenous ways of life and, in many cases, tribal adaptation efforts will be “limited by poverty, lack of resources, or [. . . ] because there may be no land left to call their own. ” The assessment emphasizes the importance of leveraging traditional knowledge for adaptation planning efforts.

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Sea Level Rise and Nuisance Flood Frequency Changes Around the U.S.

June 2014

This technical report from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) describes the increased rate and severity of recurrent coastal flooding events as related to sea level rise. It also addresses what climatic patterns are associated with year-to-year differences in flooding, and during what season nuisance floods typically occur and why. 

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Severe Weather and Manufacturing in America: Comparing the cost of drought, storms, and extreme temperatures with the cost of new EPA standards

June 2014

This analysis compares the cost of the new EPA mandated reforms on energy standards intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power plants 30% by 2030, with the costs manufacturers ultimately face from the impacts of severe weather. The Business Forward Foundation puts these numbers into perspective by examining automotive manufacturing - the largest industrial sector in the U.S.

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Assessing Criticality in Transportation Adaptation Planning

May 25, 2014

The U. S. Department of Transportation (U. S. DOT) developed this guide to help transportation agencies identify the most critical assets in their transportation systems. Identifying the critical assets can be a very effective way to help inform and narrow the scope of a transportation vulnerability assessment, making the assessment process much more manageable for an agency. The guide provides an overview of common challenges related to assessing asset criticality, options for defining criticality and identifying scope, and a process for applying criteria to rank assets' criticality.

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The Prevalence and Cost of Urban Flooding

May 2014

Investigating Cook County, Illinois as a case study, this report assesses the financial cost related to urban flooding between 2007-2011.  Urban flooding as described here can include overflow from rivers and streams, sewage pipe backups, water seepage through building walls and floors, and stormwater accumulation. Cook County is primarily urban and densely populated with the City of Chicago making up approximately 54% of the population. The study found that urban flooding is chronic and often repetitive in this county, costing a total of $773 million in insurance claims over five years.

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American Sustainable Business Council Poll Report: Small Business Owners' Views on Climate and Energy Policy Reform

June 24, 2014

In 2014, the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) is continuing its polling of small business owners nationwide, and has covered several different policy areas including climate change. This report highlights the perspective of smaller employers on the effects of future impacts of climate change on their business. 

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Vermont Climate Assessment: Considering Vermont’s Future in a Changing Climate

June 2014

The Vermont Climate Assessment (VCA) is the nation's first comprehensive state-level assessment of climate impacts modeled after the National Climate Assessment (NCA). The VCA mirrors the NCA structure but is tailored to the sectors most applicable to Vermont. The VCA presents state-level efforts to downscale global climate models, combining them with local knowledge and data. The assessment presents climate impacts across many sectors, as well as localized, community level vulnerabilities.

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Omitted Damages: Whats Missing From the Social Cost of Carbon

March 13, 2014

The 2013 Interagency Working Group on the Social Cost of Carbon (IWG) updated the U. S. social cost of carbon (SCC) for 2015 from a central value of $24 to $37. SCC is an estimate of the economic damages associated with a small increase in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, conventionally one metric ton, in a given year. The SCC is meant to be a comprehensive estimate of climate change damages and includes, but is not limited to, changes in net agricultural productivity, human health, and property damages from increased flood risk.

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