EPA – Climate Change in the United States: Benefits of Global Action. United States Environmental Protection Agency – 2015

EPA. 2015. Climate Change in the United States: Benefits of Global Action. United States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Atmospheric Programs, EPA 430-R-15-001.

About this Report

This report summarizes and communicates the results of EPA’s ongoing Climate Change Impacts and Risk Analysis (CIRA) project. The goal of this work is to estimate to what degree climate change impacts and damages to multiple U.S. sectors (e.g., human health, infrastructure, and water resources) may be avoided or reduced in a future with significant global action to reduce GHG emissions, compared to a future in which current emissions continue to grow. Importantly, only a small portion of the impacts of climate change are estimated, and therefore this report captures just some of the total benefits of reducing GHGs.

To achieve this, a multi-model framework was developed to estimate the impacts and damages to the human health and welfare of people in the U.S. The CIRA framework uses consistent inputs (e.g., socioeconomic and climate scenarios) to enable consistent comparison of sectoral impacts across time and space. In addition, the role of adaptation is modeled for some of the sectors to explore the potential for risk reduction and, where applicable, to quantify the costs associated with adaptive actions.

The methods and results of the CIRA project have been peer reviewed in the scientific literature, including a special issue of Climatic Change entitled, “A Multi-Model Framework to Achieve Consistent Evaluation of Climate Change Impacts in the United States.”1 The research papers underlying the modeling and results presented herein are cited throughout this report and are listed in Section B of the Technical Appendix.

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