Massachusetts Climate Report Card - Climate Adaptation and Resilience

Massachusetts has made significant progress to advance state and local resilience to climate change, but more funding, policy, and regional coordination will be required as climate change worsens.

Table of Contents


Massachusetts is working to prepare for the impacts of climate change and take measures to withstand, rapidly recover from, adapt to, and mitigate climate hazards and impacts. ResilientMass is our whole-of-government initiative for building statewide capacity for climate change adaptation and resilience. Vital work has occurred to date, including engagement of 99% of municipalities in the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program; the 2023 release of the ResilientMass Plan and associated state agency-led actions; agencies’ initiatives to identify and reduce their vulnerabilities to climate change; and local support through grant programs, technical assistance, and other initiatives. Resilience efforts must accelerate rapidly, however, to increase the Commonwealth’s capacity to adapt to and avoid the worst impacts of climate change. Measuring and evaluating our progress on advancing resilience is also critical. In 2024, EEA will develop a climate resilience metrics framework that centers environmental justice and equity. These metrics will encompass environmental, energy, social, physical, and economic resilience and will guide future program development, implementation, and funding decisions. Additional funding and technical assistance to identify and implement priority resilience actions as well as coordination support for regional adaptation projects is also needed to support cities and towns who are increasingly called upon to respond to climate impacts.




Amount of federal and state resilience funding

State resilience-related funding:*

  • >$90 million in FY24

Federal resilience-related funding:

  • $26.5 million in FEMA funding for natural hazard mitigation and resilience from CY19-23
  • >$198 million through ARPA, BIL/IIJA, and other federal funding sources to support resilience-related projects and programs, awarded from FY19-23

These targets will be developed as part of the comprehensive ResilientMass metrics project in the coming year.

Number of state agencies with climate vulnerability assessments of assets and operations

88 of 92 agencies (96%) identified through the 2023 ResilientMass Plan update process have developed climate vulnerability assessments.

100% of relevant state agencies should have climate vulnerability assessments of assets and operations by 2026.

Number of communities with updated MVP 2.0 or Hazard Mitigation Plans (HMPs)

MVP 2.0:

  • 34 communities (10%) are updating their MVP plans in the 2023 pilot round of the 2.0 program; this includes one 6-community regional project
    • 349 (99%) of communities completed MVP 1.0 plans by 2023
  • 1 tribe

Hazard Mitigation Plans:

  • 211 (60%) communities with FEMA approved hazard mitigation plans

Incorporate lessons learned from pilot into MVP 2.0 and have 100% of communities and Regional Planning Agencies participating in MVP 2.0 and/or having updated Hazard Mitigation Plans by 2030.

Percent of 2023 ResilientMass Plan actions in progress

69% of 2023 ResilientMass Plan actions are either in progress or in development (preparing for implementation)

  • 11 of 15 cross-governmental actions
  • 87 of 127 agency-specific actions

100% of 2023 ResilientMass Plan actions should be in progress by 2026

* This figure includes Capital Investment Plan budgets for resilience-specific programs such as Critical Coastal Infrastructure and Resilience Grants, Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness, ResilientMass Implementation Funding, and Inland Dams and Seawalls. It also includes programs with resilience benefits that focus on cranberry bog restoration, land use planning, water management, and other related programs. The definition of resilience-related programs may be revised over time.


  • Extreme weather exacerbated by climate change is already causing catastrophic economic, social, and environmental losses. Severe flooding, heat waves, and other extreme weather events in numerous parts of the state in 2023 caused tens of millions of dollars’ worth of damage, including loss and damage of homes, crops, and businesses.
  • Climate change impacts and losses are projected to intensify, and many disproportionately affect environmental justice and other priority communities. Inland flooding due to climate change could cause $9.3 million in statewide damage annually by 2030; by 2050, annual damages could total $64 million. By 2050, MA can expect 23-29 high heat days per year, with more than 400 additional annual premature deaths due to extreme heat by the end of the century. Sea level is projected to rise by up to 2.5 feet by 2050.
  • Significant additional funds will be needed to advance state, local, and regional resilience projects.
  • In addition to government action, private sector and regional solutions and coordination will be needed to build economic, social, and environmental resilience across MA.

How we are meeting the moment

  • EEA provides funding, localized climate change science and data, and decision support tools to facilitate action that enhances climate resilience for local planners, practitioners, policymakers, and the public.
  • In October 2023, EEA and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency released the ResilientMass Plan, which includes 142 priority state-led actions such as developing new standards, codes, regulations, and coordinating bodies to reduce vulnerabilities to flooding, coastal storms, and heat impacts across the state.
  • The Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Program has engaged 349 out of the 351 (99%) cities and towns in Massachusetts in climate resilience planning and implementation. In April 2023, EEA launched the MVP Planning 2.0 pilot program to further center residents most impacted by climate change, launch new training on best practices for resilience and equity, and offer technical assistance to move from planning to action.
  • EEA is launching a community climate roundtable to further engage with community leaders on expediting climate action.
  • EEA has launched an Office of Climate Science to increase state agency, municipal, and public access and understanding of statewide climate change projections and trends and to provide technical assistance and guidance. The Office of Climate Science will convene a climate science advisory group of academics and researchers to share latest climate research findings, identify research gaps, and inform best practices.
  • DEP is updating stormwater and wetland regulations to account for climate change impacts and developing new permitting pathways for nature-based projects that increase flood resilience.
  • EEA recently launched the ResilientCoasts initiative to address the high-priority impacts of sea level rise, storm surges, coastal erosion, and other coastal hazards. ResilientCoasts will consider climate-resilient development and standards in vulnerable areas and develop best practices for coastal adaptation.
  • EEA, in partnership with MEMA, awarded $6.3 million in funding to state agencies to implement key resilience actions. These include resilience improvements at state-aided public housing authorities, expanding the climate smart agriculture program, and updating environmental regulations to consider climate change impacts.
  • EEA is investigating innovative new funding and financing mechanisms to support state and local resilience projects.
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