We must mitigate the
impacts of climate change
on our people and planet.

Human activity is having large-scale effects on the environment. Greater extremes in weather, population growth, pollution, and migration require more resilient societies. Climate change, energy transitions, and the policy responses to both will profoundly affect a broad range of social, economic, and technological systems.

By examining the economic stressors and social changes that are intertwined with environmental changes, RAND can design resiliency plans and develop long-term solutions to alleviate the impacts of climate and energy changes and help communities adapt to a changing planet.

Key themes for this priority


Natural disasters, extreme-weather events, and changes in the climate are altering the environment. Climate change is poised to become the single greatest driver of mass migration in coming years. As numbers reach crisis proportions, societies need solutions to avoid upheaval, insecurity, and strife while continuing to pursue economic development.


Our neighborhoods have a significant impact on our health and well-being. Environmental measures like air quality, heat, traffic levels, and access to greenspace all contribute to our quality of life. These factors vary widely between communities, with some bearing a far greater environmental burden than others. How do we create conditions and environments that positively support health and well-being for all?


Policymakers have set ambitious targets for reducing carbon emissions that would require dramatic changes to our energy, transportation, industrial, and regulatory systems. Successfully managing the transition to a carbonless future will require innovations in technology, infrastructure, policy, and behavior, as well as analyses that can support better decisionmaking and the avoidance of undesirable consequences.


We are in the midst of multiple crises: inadequate fresh water, limited arable land, poor air quality, and species extinctions. New, agile, affordable, and scalable solutions are needed to help communities throughout the world better understand, adapt to, and solve the multiple challenges brought on by the changing climate.