Economic Risks of Climate Change: An American Prospectus

Houser, T., Hsiang, S., Kopp, R.E., Larsen, K., Delgado, M., Jina, A., Mastrandrea, M., Mohan, S., Muir-Wood, R., Rasmussen, D.J., Rising, J. and P. Wilson. (2015). Economic Risks of Climate Change: An American Prospectus. New York, NY: Columbia University Press.

Published August 9, 2015


Climate change threatens the economy of the United States in myriad ways, including increased flooding and storm damage, altered crop yields, lost labor productivity, higher crime, reshaped public-health patterns, and strained energy systems, among many other effects. Combining the latest climate models, state-of-the-art econometric research on human responses to climate, and cutting-edge private-sector risk-assessment tools, Economic Risks of Climate Change: An American Prospectus crafts a game-changing profile of the economic risks of climate change in the United States.


"Points the way toward a new era in climate-risk analysis.... The authors not only provide a basis for rational judgments by policy makers but also open a new avenue toward progressive improvement in our understanding of risk."

Michael Oppenheimer, Princeton University

This prospectus is based on a critically acclaimed independent assessment of the economic risks posed by climate change commissioned by the Risky Business Project. With new contributions from Karen Fisher-Vanden, Michael Greenstone, Geoffrey Heal, Michael Oppenheimer, and Nicholas Stern and Bob Ward, as well as a foreword from Risky Business cochairs Michael Bloomberg, Henry Paulson, and Thomas Steyer, the book speaks to scientists, researchers, scholars, activists, and policy makers. It depicts the distribution of escalating climate-change risk across the country and assesses its effects on aspects of the economy as varied as hurricane damages and violent crime. Beautifully illustrated and accessibly written, this book is an essential tool for helping businesses and governments prepare for the future.

"This report is a careful, very timely and fundamentally important contribution.... Its legacy should be continued research to assess and, where possible, quantify those impacts that cannot now be avoided, and which must be adapted to."

Lord Nicholas Stern, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment