Global Climate Change

Featured

Global climate models developed by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predict glacial retreat, rises in sea level, and other impacts on human and natural activity, from agriculture to migratory patterns. RAND researchers have studied and are continuing to examine the effects of climate change, particularly how governments and businesses respond to both observed changes and projected scenarios.

  • Wind turbines surrounded by fog in Costa Rica, photo by OGphoto/Getty Images

    Report

    A Green Costa Rican COVID-19 Recovery

    Feb 24, 2022

    Before COVID-19 hit, Costa Rica had been taking a leading role in addressing the effects of climate change by investing in decarbonization. Could these same investments also accelerate Costa Rica's pandemic economic recovery and help address historical inequities?

  • Construction at a subdivision for residents of Isle de Jean Charles, Louisiana, who are being relocated due to climate change, near Shriever, Louisiana, April 7, 2021, photo by Kathleen Flynn/Reuters

    Commentary

    To Help Climate Migrants, We Must First Recognize Them

    Jan 28, 2022

    Despite the large and growing population displaced by extreme weather, there is no common definition of a “climate migrant.” Once we get a clearer sense of just who is a climate migrant, policy efforts should begin focusing on the full fabric of life in our communities, creating systems that will help migrants become a part of that fabric in safe and dignified ways.

Explore Global Climate Change

  • Two industrial chimneys release heavy smoke into the blue sky, photo by kapichka/Adobe Stock

    Q&A

    Mapping Environmental Racism: Q&A with Jaime Madrigano and Benjamin Preston

    Environmental policy experts Jaime Madrigano and Benjamin Preston are leading an effort to highlight how discriminatory policies have shaped environmental health disparities. Their goal: create an interactive map of the United States to motivate environmental policy that advances antiracism.

    Sep 7, 2021

  • Periodical

    Periodical

    RAND Review: September-October 2021

    The cover story highlights strategies to mitigate homegrown terrorism and ideologically inspired violence in the U.S. A second feature describes Costa Rica's ambitious decarbonization plan and its implications for nations around the world.

    Sep 7, 2021

  • Blog

    U.S. Failure in Afghanistan, Critical Race Theory Bans, Income Inequality: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on how early mistakes led to America's failure in Afghanistan, the potential effects of critical race theory bans, an art installation that breaks down RAND data on income inequality, and more.

    Sep 3, 2021

  • An electric bus in San Jose, Costa Rica, on March 5, 2020, photo by Ezequiel Becerra/Getty Images

    Essay

    Costa Rica Leads the Way in Cutting Carbon Emissions

    Almost every country has pledged to slash carbon emissions to slow the gears of global warming. Costa Rica's plan provides a glimpse of what a carbon-neutral future will look like. It shows how nations can take action and make investments that hold up, regardless of what future comes to pass.

    Aug 30, 2021

  • Aftermath of a 7.2 magnitude quake in Les Cayes

    Multimedia

    Climate Change: An Issue of Equity

    RAND senior policy researcher Benjamin Preston describes areas where climate change and equity intersect.

    Aug 26, 2021

  • Firefighters knock down hot spots while protecting a rail bridge from the Dixie Fire near the town of Quincy, California, August 5, 2021, photo by Fred Greaves/Reuters

    Commentary

    Climate Change Is Only One Driver of Explosive Wildfire Season—Don't Forget Land Management

    The fire seasons that have been scorching huge areas and wiping entire towns from the map appear to be the future. Accepting that wildland fires are a part of our environment and working to live with fires rather than continuously fighting against them may be the most responsible path forward.

    Aug 16, 2021

  • Report

    Report

    Addressing societal challenges in Norway: Key trends, future scenarios, missions and structural measures

    Through a series of nine reports, the study identified priority missions that the Research Council of Norway could consider implementing in the future to address societal challenges, and potential structural measures needed to enable a resilient R&I environment in Norway.

    Aug 9, 2021

  • A facility at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, was severely damaged by Hurricane Michael, October 10, 2018, photo by Staff Sgt. Ryan Conroy/U.S. Air Force

    Report

    How Can the Department of the Air Force Prepare for Natural Hazards?

    Some Air Force facilities are exposed to flooding, high winds, wildfires, or even multiple hazards. Future costs of damages are uncertain, and climate change could affect the frequency and scale of these hazards. The process for making investment decisions regarding resilience should be flexible.

    Aug 9, 2021

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Arctic Shipping Guidance from the CMIP6 Ensemble on Operational and Infrastructural Timescales

    The expectation of a seasonally ice-free Arctic by mid-century has sparked interest in Arctic opportunities and risks. This paper presents a framework for obtaining more timely and salient information to guide decisions relevant to operational and infrastructural horizons.

    Jul 30, 2021

  • Topographic map showing Russia and the Arctic region, image by FrankRamspott/Getty Images

    Report

    Exploring Gaps in Arctic Governance

    Conditions in the Arctic region are evolving, driven by such factors as climate change, economics, and geopolitics. What are the risks that come with these changes—and how could governance in the Arctic adapt to mitigate them?

    Jul 27, 2021

  • Blog

    Paying College Athletes, Preventing Suicide, Planning for Heatwaves: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on a potential step toward paying college athletes, helping college freshmen overcome COVID-19 learning loss, the effects of U.S. sanctions in Syria, more.

    Jul 16, 2021

  • An engineer inspecting newly manufactured solar panels in company. Woman quality engineer examining solar panels in factory. Photo by alvarez / Getty Images

    Report

    Incentivizing Solar: Catalyzing Solar Energy Technology Adoption to Address the Challenge of Climate Change

    The authors provide an overview of the U.S. solar energy market and identify federal incentives that can help decarbonize the U.S. economy. They also explore solar reliability, job benefits, and availability to disadvantaged communities.

    Jul 14, 2021

  • Flooding in Northumberland, Virginia, on June 11, 2021. Photo by National Weather Service

    Tool

    Developing Future Projected Intensity-Duration-Frequency (IDF) Curves: Technical Report

    To support stormwater managers in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed and Virginia in adapting to climate change, this study updated intensity-duration-frequency (IDF) curves, a common tool used for stormwater infrastructure design, to reflect future climate changes.

    Jul 9, 2021

  • Tool

    Tool

    Mid-Atlantic Regional Climate Impacts Summary and Outlook: Spring 2021

    This climate summary aims to inform Mid-Atlantic policymakers and practitioners about spring 2021, regional climate trends, and the upcoming summer season. A tool shows flooding in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania under historic and future climate.

    Jun 21, 2021

  • Soldiers from the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers in flooded Staines-Upon-Thames, photo by Cpl Richard Cave LBPPA/Crown Copyright CC BY-NC 2.0

    Multimedia

    Crisis Response in a Changing Climate

    In this audio conversation, senior analyst Lucia Retter is joined by Lieutenant General Richard Nugee, the nonexecutive director for climate change and sustainability for UK Defence, to discuss a study on the implications of climate change for UK defence logistics in crisis response situations.

    Jun 4, 2021

  • Blog

    Reopening the U.S. Economy, Geoengineering, 5G: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on the potential effects of reopening the economy before the White House's vaccination goal is met, students' learning experiences during the pandemic, competition in the 5G era, and more.

    May 28, 2021

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    The Impact of Black Carbon Emissions from Projected Arctic Shipping on Regional Ice Transport

    Diverting shipping emissions from the Suez Canal to the Arctic will influence regional evolution of sea ice cover with regional differences in future sea ice retreat. These results are likely to have policy implications with expansion of industrial activities into the Arctic.

    May 26, 2021

  • A Chinese meteorological department worker burns catalyst for cloud seeding and snowmaking to end drought in Beijing, China, February 17, 2009, photo by Oriental Image via Reuters

    Report

    What Are the Geopolitical Risks of Geoengineering?

    Geoengineering is the intentional manipulation of an environmental process on Earth to counteract the effects of climate change. Geoengineering implementation could introduce geopolitical risks. This raises the question of whether existing international governance mechanisms can manage these risks.

    May 25, 2021

  • USS Connecticut submarine crew members after surfacing in the Arctic Circle during Ice Exercise, a biennial submarine exercise that promotes interoperability between allies and partners in Alaska, March 7, 2020, photo by Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Michael B. Zingaro/U.S. Navy

    Commentary

    Blinken's Arctic Opportunities

    Continued positive U.S. engagement in the Arctic Council could be important for balancing the influence of Russia and China, and in moving toward the Biden administration's climate change goals. Washington's new priority on climate change could be an issue that will now bind, rather than divide, Arctic states.

    May 19, 2021

  • Environmental advocates join Washington D.C.–area students at a rally on the Ellipse near the White House in Washington, D.C., September 13, 2019, photo by Leah Millis/Reuters

    Commentary

    COVID-19 and Climate Change Both Require One Generation to Sacrifice for Another

    COVID-19 and climate change are both global phenomena that left unmanaged will inflict excruciating human and economic tolls. They also require a similar mix of approaches to solve. But they have one more similarity that attracts less attention: they both require one generation to change behavior in support of another.

    May 17, 2021