​​​​​Maryland is committed to finding real bipartisan, common-sense solutions to protect our environment, combat climate change, and improve our air quality. By working together, we are showing that it is possible to find consensus to protect our natural resources, promote clean energy, and grow our economy for current and future generations.
​​Governor Larry Hogan

Climate Change Community GIF by The Pew Charitable Trusts

Board of Public Works Approves Funding for Urban Trees Program and Climate Progress​

“This smart investment in the Urban Trees Program will help us make imp​ortant progress on climate and on cleaner air and water,” said Maryland Environment Deputy Secretary Suzanne E. Dorsey. “The Urban Trees Program will also improve the quality of life in underserved communities across Maryland by reducing urban heat island effects.”

Governor Hogan Announces Maryland Joins National Climate Challenge to Reduce GHG Emissions 

Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change (IPCC) latest report​ summary ​for policy makers and Glossary of Terms​​

Maryland's comprehensive 2030 
Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Act (GGRA) Plan is available
here​​​.

Maryland's Electric Vehicle Plan​
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Read Maryland's Ocean Acidification (OA) Action Plan​ to better understand and combat this impact of climate chang​e.

Explore an energy topic is it relates to Climate Change in the Energy 101 series by the University of Maryland Extension.

Discover Fifteen Ways to Save Energyin Your Home

The World Resources Institute (WRI) Report Shows Maryland Ranks #1​ in Reducing Emissions while Expanding the Economy. 


United Nations: What is Climate Change?

Marylanders, know your flood risk.

Calculate your Carbon Footprint​ courtesy ​of the Nature Conservancy   

Chesapeake Behavior Change helps individuals and organizations promote behaviors that help restore the Bay. ​
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The Maryland Energy Administration offers several funding programs​ to help with energy reduction, renewable energy, climate action and green jobs​. 

ClimateCentral.org ​is an independent organization of leading scientists and journalists researching and reporting the facts about our changing climate and its impact on the public. 



Climate Change Program Communications Contact:
susan.casey1@maryland.gov ​








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Climate Change Program

MDE's Climate Change Program is responsible for ​staffing of the Maryland Commission on Climate Change (MCCC).  It also is responsible for managing and publishing the MCCC’s annual report to the Governor and General Assembly and ensuring the state complies with climate change related state and federal laws.  

Climate Change Program staff also prepare the state's biennial Greenhouse Gas Inventory reports, and write the Climate Action plan, known as the Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Act (GGRA) Plan. The program staff coordinates with and attends the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) meetings and the U.S. Climate Change Alliance policy meetings.


 Warming Stripes by Ed Hawkins, University of Reading 


The main cause of climate change is human activities, particularly the emission of greenhouse ​gases (GHGs) into the atmosphere. The Maryland Department of the Environment's (MDE) Climate Change Program is leading Governor Hogan's efforts to reduce GHG emissions while creating jobs and benefiting the economy, as required by the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act (GGRA). Although many initiatives throughout the State contribute to these efforts, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and the​ Commission on Climate Change​ are key efforts by MDE, each of which can be explored further by following the navigational links on top, left-hand side of this page. 


In November 2018, a federal report advised that "climate change is affecting the natural environment, agriculture, energy production and use, land and water resources, transportation, and human health and welfare across the U.S. and its territories."  ​The good news is that in Maryland, we have an action plan to combat it.

With 3,100 miles of shoreline, Maryland is the fourth most vulnerable state to suffer the effects of sea-level rise associated with climate change. Rising sea levels and increased storm intensity could have devastating and far-reaching impacts on the Atlantic coast and the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem that affect the environmental, recreational, and economic benefits enjoyed by Maryland and her visitors. Although Maryland's coastal areas may be considered particularly vulnerable, all areas of the State are at risk. In general, climate change alters the severity, frequency, or distribution of existing issues that are impacted either directly or indirectly by temperature and precipitation. This includes, but is not limited to: ​

  • Impacts on coastal, bay, and inland water quality parameters that may change the viable uses of surface water, such as for irrigation, recreation, or human consumption. MDE's Water and Science Administration's Climate Adaptation Goals and Strategies are available here. ​
  • More frequent disruptions to urban and coastal infrastructure in Maryland caused by extreme weather events and sea-level rise that may indirectly impact the economy of the region by restricting the flow of goods and affecting days worked;
  • Common stressors experienced among ecosystems, agriculture, fisheries, and forestry such as those caused by general changes in temperature and precipitation regimes; increased extreme weather events; and increased pressures from weeds, diseases, and pests;
  • Human health issues, including those affected by impacts on food and water supply, air quality, and extreme weather events; and
  • A higher probability of negative outcomes for disadvantaged communities and individuals inherently more sensitive or with a reduced adaptive capacity for responding to the impacts of climate change.
To learn more about climate change and what Maryland is doing to combat it, read the 2030 Greenhouse Gas Red​uction Plan. MDE submitted the comprehensive plan for Maryland to Governor Hogan and the State Legislature on February 19, 2020, to coincide with the​ U.S.​A's return to the Paris Climate Agreement. For the national perspective, visit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Climate Change in the United States And, for the international perspective, read the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) latest report . 


Maryland's Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Act (GGRA)

In 2009, Maryland adopted the Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Act (GGRA) and it was amended in 2016. The law requires the State to reduce GHG emissions by 25 percent from a 2006 baseline by 2020, in a way that ensures a positive impact on Maryland's economy, protects existing manufacturing jobs, and creates new jobs in the State. MDE's 2015 GGRA Plan update showed that Maryland was on target to not only meet but also to exceed this level of emissions reduction in tandem wit​h a healthy economic benefit.

Governor Hogan signed an updated version of the law, ​which includes the same balanced requirements and safeguards as the original, such as additional reporting and a mid-course reaffirmation of goals by the Maryland General Assembly, as well as incorporating protection for jobs and the economy. The most significant enhancement was a new benchmark requiring a 40 percent reduction of emissions from 2006 levels by 2030. This additional benchmark was included in order to ensure continued progress after 2020 toward the State's long-term GHG emission reduction goals. According to a World Resources Institute report published in August 2020, Maryland leads the nation in the amount of emissions reductions (38%) and simultaneous growth of GDP (18%) in a 12 year period. 

In the fall of 2019, MDE released a comprehensive, economy-wide draft plan to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change.  After more than a year of analysis using the latest science, and listening to Marylanders and stakeholders, the final plan was published. Its 100+ bold and comprehensive programs and measures set Maryland on an ambitious path to serve as a model for how the nation can respond to climate change while also supporting economic growth and adding new jobs. The plan focuses on the need to better serve disadvantaged communities throughout our state where climate change disproportionately impacts them. 


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CONTACT: ​​
Christoph​​er.Beck@maryland.gov                                                             
MDE Climate Change Program Deputy Manager​
                                                                                                                                                        
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