California Climate Change Assessments
California produces periodic scientific assessments on the potential impacts of climate change in California and reports potential adaptation responses. Required by Executive Order #S-03-05, these assessments influence legislation and inform policy makers.
The First Climate Change Assessment, released in 2006, looked at the potential impacts of climate change on key state resources such as the water supply, public health, agriculture, coastal areas, forestry, and electricity production and demand. The assessment influenced the passage of Assembly Bill 32, the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006.
The Second Climate Change Assessment, released in 2009, attempted to provide initial estimates of the economic impacts of climate change. It concluded that adaptation - as a complementary approach to mitigation - could substantially reduce economic impacts of loss and damage from a changing climate. Findings from the Second Assessment were instrumental in preparing California's 2009 statewide adaptation strategy.
The Third Climate Change Assessment, released in 2012, was shaped by the request for more information on vulnerability and adaptation options discussed in the 2009 California Adaptation Strategy. It made significant progress in projecting climate change impacts, but also in better understanding the interactions of those potential impacts with on the ground exposure, sensitivity, and response capacity of natural and human systems.
Fourth Climate Change Assessment - California’s recently released Climate Change Research Plan articulates near-term climate change research needs to ensure that the state stays on track to meet its climate goals. The Fourth Climate Change Assessment is the first inter-agency effort to implement a substantial portion of the Climate Change Research Plan.