New York City Panel on Climate Change


The New York City Panel on Climate Change (NPCC) is a 20-member independent advisory body that synthesizes scientific information on climate change and advises City policymakers on local resiliency and adaptation strategies to protect against rising temperatures, increased flooding, and other hazards.

The Panel is led by a team of five co-chairs who possess a broad spectrum of disciplinary expertise including climate science, demography, engineering, geography, vulnerability analysis, global change, architecture, and urban planning. Both the full NPCC and its leadership team were selected to ensure a diversity of backgrounds, research disciplines, and fields of technical practice.

NPCC started in 2009 and 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. Past iterations of the NPCC have upheld this responsibility by publishing assessment reports that synthesize several years of research and analysis.


The 4th NPCC is expanding on this model by producing a series of NPCC4 products. This will ensure that the Panel is flexible and responsive to short-term research needs – a function that is all the more important considering the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on New York City and the interactions between the current health crisis with the ongoing climate crisis. As part of this expanded approach, the Panel will also release a fourth assessment report.

The work of the Panel will continue to 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. Following Hurricane Sandy, the City channeled major investments into climate change adaptation and has now committed more than $20 billion to adaptation efforts. These efforts include both completed projects—like the Reconstructed Rockaway Boardwalk and wetland restorations in Sawmill Creek and Sunset Cove Park—and also ongoing efforts, including coastal protections in all five boroughs as well as programs to increase social resiliency, strengthen small businesses, and harden critical infrastructure.   

NPCC Members

Download the member bios

  • 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
  • Dr. Richard Moss (co-chair), Senior Research Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's Joint Global Change Research Institute, University of Maryland
  • 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. Janice Barnes, Founding Partner, Climate Adaptation Partners
  • 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, Vice President for Environmental Health, Vital Strategies
  • 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. 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, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Environmental Studies, New York University (NYU); and Associated Clinical Professor, NYU Wagner School of Public Service

NPCC Reports