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Climate Ready Boston

Climate Ready Boston is City's initiative to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

In Boston, we experience the effects of climate change on a daily basis. Rising sea levels, hotter days, and stronger storms pose a threat to our communities, open spaces, infrastructure, and buildings. The City of Boston is taking action to build resilient solutions to ensure that Boston continues to thrive for generations to come. In 2016, the City released the Climate Ready Boston report, which evolved into the ongoing Climate Ready Boston initiative. Since 2016, we developed coastal resilience solutions plans that present strategies to address flooding for all 47 miles of Boston's coastline. We also developed a plan to equitably address rising temperatures across the entire city. The Climate Ready Boston team continues to work with the Boston community, public agencies, and private landowners to implement resilience projects that address coastal and inland flooding and rising temperatures. 

Climate Ready Boston (2016)

The City of Boston released the Climate Ready Boston report in 2016. The report included a citywide climate change vulnerability assessment, updated climate projections, and an outline of strategies to address extreme heat, stormwater flooding, and coastal flooding from sea-level rise and storms. 


Citywide Efforts

Climate Resilient Infrastructure Guidelines

Public Works released guidelines for flood barriers in the public right-of-ways in 2018.

Coastal Flood Resilience Design Guidelines and Overlay District

The Boston Planning & Development Agency established the Coastal Flood Resilience Overlay District in 2022, which formalized the 2018 Coastal Flood Resilience Design Guidelines.

Coastal Stormwater Discharge Analysis

In 2023, the Boston Water and Sewer Commission studied the impact of climate change on the drainage system and developed possible solutions.

Green Infrastructure

Green infrastructure helps with coastal flooding, stormwater management, and rising temperatures and is an essential part of Boston’s work towards becoming a greener, more resilient and equitable city.

Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan

The Office of Emergency Management updated the City's Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan in 2021.

Open Space & Recreation Plan

The 2015-2021 Open Space & Recreation Plan assessed Boston's open spaces and provided actions for improvements. An update to this plan is in progress as of 2023.

Urban Forest Plan

In 2022, the Parks & Recreation Department released a plan for how the Boston community can work together to prioritize, preserve, and grow our tree canopy.

U.S. Army Corps Partnership

A federal partnership that will assess different approaches to coastal resilience and recommend solutions that would be eligible for federal funding.

Wetlands Protection Ordinance

The Boston Conservation Commission adopted a local Wetlands Protection Ordinance in 2019, which gives the City greater authority to protect its wetlands.

Climate Action Progress

Across the City, we recognize the importance of tracking our progress and being transparent. The Environment Department regularly releases a Climate Action Progress report. In the report, we show the progress we're making on the initiatives recommended in Climate Ready Boston, as well as our other climate initiatives, such as carbon neutrality, zero waste, and wetlands conservation.

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