Climate Resilience

The present impacts of climate change grow more apparent every day, making resilience planning more critical now than ever for cities, states, and businesses. C2ES works with diverse stakeholders in the public and private sectors to understand climate risk and develop effective strategies and solutions.

A central theme of our resilience work is how climate change impacts businesses, and the steps they are taking to prevent the worst damages. Our series of groundbreaking reports shine light on how some of the world’s largest companies are preparing for climate threats. We also focus on climate impacts to communities and solutions that can increase their resilience. Recognizing that frontline and environmental justice communities bear the brunt of climate impacts, we are working to identify strategies that can support these communities in becoming more resilient, without deepening existing inequities.

Major Resilience Initiatives Include:

The Competitive Edge of Resilient Cities

The Resilience Factor: A Competitive Edge for Climate-Ready Cities explores how three key aspects of city competitiveness will be impacted as climate impacts worsen: city finances, economic development, and livability. The report draws from two years of research to demonstrate how climate resilience can be a key factor in economic competitiveness and help communities position themselves to thrive despite climate change.

The Resilience Factor: A Competitive Edge for Climate-Ready Cities recommends:
  • A cohesive federal and state resilience policy landscape with adequate resources for local governments
  • Federal and state protections and resources to protect disadvantaged communities from negative impacts arising from changing risk-management steps taken by the private sector
  • Increased collaboration between city departments, agencies, and regional entities
  • Enhanced local protections and investments for low-income and marginalized communities
  • Private sector support to improve local governments’ abilities to assess climate risk, invest in resilience, and adopt better financial protections.

The Business Case for Climate Resilience

“Inside the board-rooms and C-suites of companies across all sectors, the discussion has shifted from the question of what impact their business could have on the environment, to how climate change will impact their business.”

C2ES research shows that nearly all companies in the Standard & Poor’s Global 100 Index have identified physical risks that climate change poses to their businesses. The flip-side of risk is opportunity—and our work shows that businesses have much to gain from investing in climate resilience.

C2ES has identified ways for businesses to reduce risks and seize opportunities for climate action, from our early work on Weathering the Storm: Building Business Resilience to Climate Change to our recent report Business Risks, Opportunities, and Leadership. More of our work is available on the Business Action on Resilience page.

Today, investors and stakeholders are driving new business-led initiatives for climate action. U.S. companies are helping shape impactful domestic climate policies. The members of C2ES’s Business Environmental Leadership Council provide impressive examples of climate action.