The fall of 2018 brought the release of three important climate change reports: the Fourth National Climate Assessment, the Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, and the Emissions Gap Report 2018. Taken together, these reports provide the strongest warnings yet that failure to achieve rapid and significant reductions of greenhouse gas emissions will have severe consequences for humanity. New York State is responding to the challenges posed by climate change through programs to reduce the state’s contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions and to adapt to the inevitable consequences of climate change.
Mark Lowery will discuss the findings and recommendations of the three reports and describe anticipated effects of climate change on New York’s communities, residents, businesses and natural resources. He will describe New York’s continuing work to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, despite the current lack of federal leadership, and programs to identify and mitigate climatic hazards. Finally, he will describe state support for local action through the Climate Smart Communities program and actions individuals can take.