Press Release - NYC Mayor's Office of Climate and Environmental Justice
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New York City Panel on Climate Change's Latest Climate Assessment Report Finds City Will Be Warmer and Wetter
New York City Panel on Climate Change's Latest Climate Assessment Report Finds City Will Be Warmer and Wetter

Assessment Demonstrates How Climate Change is Increasing Frequency and Amount of Precipitation and Number of Hot Days

Uses the Best Available, Up-to-Date Models to Produce Climate Projections for the City 

April 29, 2024

New York, NY – The Mayor’s Office of Climate & Environmental Justice (MOCEJ) today announced the release of NPCC4, the New York City Panel on Climate Change’s (NPCC) fourth full climate assessment report for New York City. NPCC4 confirms New York City will be warmer, with more extreme heat events, and wetter, with growing risks from intense rainfall and inland flooding. For the first time, the report also has a cross-cutting focus on the equity implications of climate change. As the recently released Environmental Justice NYC Report shows, low-income communities and communities of color are disproportionately impacted by environmental inequities, due to legacies of discriminatory actions. NPCC4 provides insight on climate displacement risks as well as the negative effects that could come with adapting to climate change. These projections inform the city’s ongoing efforts to ensure that New York City is prepared to withstand and emerge stronger from the threat of climate change.

“Excessive heat, rain, tides, and pollution threaten the foundational strength of New York City, a foundation critically necessary for strong housing, strong schools and a strong economy,” said Deputy Mayor for Operations Meera Joshi. “We must rise to the occasion as a city – making sure every dollar spent towards infrastructure goes further, and every foot of grass, every tree, every brick, does double duty to account for rain and heat. Through daily discipline we will meet our climate goals and ensure the bright NYC future that our children and grandchildren deserve.”

“As New York City responds to the impacts of climate change, we must be guided by the latest data, and the NPCC findings will be used by city agencies to inform our policy and programs,” said New York City Chief Climate Officer and New York City Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Rohit T. Aggarwala. “The panel’s variety of expertise, including in architecture, design, and demography, has been essential to creating this important work, and we look forward to many more years of collaboration.”

“We are grateful to the New York City Panel on Climate Change for more than 15 years of rigorous research that helps ground city climate policy in data,” said Mayor’s Office of Climate & Environmental Justice Executive Director Elijah Hutchinson. “The best available science on climate helps advance our goals to further environmental justice and improve health for all New Yorkers. This data will also serve as a foundation for city construction projects as we work to make our infrastructure more resilient.”

The NPCC is an independent advisory body appointed by the mayor to assess the current and future impacts of climate change on New York City. They also make recommendations on climate projections for the region, informed by the best available science. 

Key findings from NPCC4 include:

Climate Science:

  • The number of hot days and the frequency and duration of heat waves are expected to increase.
  • Sea level is projected to rise.


  • Risks from rainfall, river-based, coastal, and groundwater flooding will increase because of sea level rise and intensified rainfall.
  • To handle increased amounts of water, more grey and green infrastructure and natural and nature-based solutions are needed.


  • Climate displacement is an important dimension of social vulnerability to climate change; the NPCC proposes a climate displacement and social vulnerability score to better measure the risks of climate displacement. 
  • The cost burdens of climate adaptation (such as higher energy costs, insurance premiums, and relocation) affect people differently – and can result in increased displacement risks.


  • Climate change-related health risks are a threat to all New Yorkers, but especially those most vulnerable because of age, poor health, racial and social inequities, and social isolation.
  • Heat waves are, on average, the deadliest type of extreme weather in New York City.

Energy & Energy Insecurity: 

  • Progress reducing energy use and greenhouse gas emissions to meet the city and state’s ambitious goals must be approached deliberately, considering energy insecurity and health. 
  • Energy insecurity can harm public health directly – via inadequate heating or cooling, indoor air pollution, and reduced reliability for medical devices and refrigeration – and indirectly when high energy costs reduce spending on other essential items like healthcare and food.

The NPCC was codified in Local Law 42 of 2012 with a mandate to provide an authoritative and actionable source of scientific information on future climate change and its potential impacts. The full panel and its leadership team were selected to ensure a diversity of backgrounds, research disciplines, and fields of technical practice. The NPCC is reviewed by an advisory board of city agencies, and MOCEJ coordinates to make sure other reports and policies integrate the latest scientific information from the NPCC report.

According to the co-chairs of the NPCC4 report, “NPCC4’s findings emphasize the significant and continuing risks that New York City faces as a result of climate change. These include a future climate that will be warmer – with more extreme heat events, and wetter – with growing risks from intense rainfall and inland flooding. NPCC4 paid particular attention to how these changes may affect human health, vulnerable communities, energy security, and the city’s future. Addressing the ongoing climate risks that the city faces while also fostering a more resilient, equitable, and adaptable future will require multiple levels of cross-sectoral investment, innovation, and transformation.”

The NPCC members are:

  • Dr. Deborah Balk (co-chair), Professor of Public Affairs, Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, Baruch College at the City University of New York (CUNY); and Professor, Economics, and Sociology Ph.D. Programs, CUNY Graduate Center
  • Dr. Christian Braneon (co-chair), Research Scientist, Baruch College at the City University of New York (CUNY); Co-Director, Environmental Justice and Climate Just Cities Network at The Earth Institute of Columbia University; Head of Climate Justice, Carbon Direct
  • Dr. Robin Leichenko (co-chair), Professor and Chair of Geography, Rutgers University; and Co-Director, Rutgers Climate Institute
  • Joel Towers (co-chair), Professor of Architecture and Sustainable Design, Parsons School of Design; Director, Tishman Environment and Design Center; and University Professor, New School University
  • Dr. Ana Baptista, Assistant Professor of Professional Practice, Environmental Policy and Sustainability Management Graduate Program, New School University; and Associate Director, Tishman Environment and Design Center, New School University
  • Dr. Sheila Foster, Scott K. Ginsburg Professor of Urban Law and Policy, Georgetown University
  • Dr. Radley Horton, Research Professor, Columbia University Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
  • Dr. Kim Knowlton, Senior Scientist, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC); Deputy Director, NRDC’s Science Center; and Assistant Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health
  • Dr. Nicole Maher, Senior Coastal Scientist, The Nature Conservancy
  • Dr. Thomas Matte, Senior Lecturer, Division of Environmental Health Sciences, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health
  • Dr. Peter Marcotullio, Professor of Geography and Director of the Institute for Sustainable Cities, Hunter College; Associate of the City University of New York (CUNY) Advanced Science Research Center (ASRC); and Faculty Member, Earth and Environmental Sciences Program, CUNY Graduate Center
  • Dr. Katherine McComas, Professor, Department of Communication, Cornell University
  • Dr. Timon McPhearson, Professor, Urban Ecology and Director, Urban Systems Lab, New School University
  • Dr. Franco Montalto, Professor and Director, Sustainable Water Resource Engineering Lab, Drexel University; Founder and President, eDesign Dynamics LLC; and Director, North American Hub, Urban Climate Change Research Network (UCCRN)
  • Dr. Richard Moss, Senior Research Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s Joint Global Change Research Institute, University of Maryland
  • Dr. Philip Orton, Research Associate Professor, Ocean Engineering, Stevens Institute of Technology
  • Dr. Bernice Rosenzweig, Faculty Member, Environmental Science, Sarah Lawrence College
  • Dr. John Kuo Wei Tchen, Clement A. Price Chair of Public History and Humanities and Director, Clement Price Institute on Ethnicity, Culture and the Modern Experience, Rutgers University – Newark
  • Dr. Gernot Wagner, Climate Economist, Columbia Business School


CONTACT: Kimberly Winston, [email protected], 917-853-6832