Delaware’s Climate Action Plan will outline strategies to address the causes of climate change — ways the state can minimize greenhouse gas emissions in partnership with federal agencies, local governments and businesses.
Throughout 2020, the state engaged residents and businesses to develop the Climate Action Plan. It will include strategies to address the consequences of climate change — ways the state can maximize our resilience to the impacts we are seeing today, and which are expected to get worse. Learn more.
Our agricultural and tourism economies
The natural places we enjoy for recreation
The health of our residents and visitors
Access to clean energy and transportation for all Delawareans
Renewable energy (wind and solar)
Energy efficiency and industrial refrigerants
Clean transportation (public transit, electric vehicles)
Agriculture and conservation
Support for local communities (technical and planning assistance, grant funding)
Partnerships with other states
Greenhouse gases, (GHGs) are vapors in the atmosphere that trap heat around the earth (such as carbon dioxide). When we use fossil fuels like coal, natural gas and oil to power our homes, businesses and vehicles, we release even more GHGs into the atmosphere. Humans have released a significant amount of GHGs since the mid-1800s, and this has led to rising temperatures and other changes in our earth and climate.
Climate change looks different depending on where you are in the world. In Delaware, climate change primarily takes the form of increasing temperatures, more frequent intense storms (including heavy precipitation), and sea level rise. Check out the Causes and Consequences Overview for a look at some of the ways climate change affects our state. More information is available in the Delaware Climate Change Impact Assessment at de.gov/climatechange.
Based on a 2019 survey supervised by the University of Delaware, most Delawareans support taking action to address both the causes and consequences of climate change. Check out the 2019 Survey Infographic for a summary of the survey results.
You can also visit de.gov/climatesurvey for a full report of results.
Delaware can prepare for climate change by minimizing greenhouse gas emissions and maximizing resilience to climate change impacts.
DNREC partnered with consultants to analyze what Delaware’s greenhouse gas emissions could look like over the next three decades. The technical analysis considered two scenarios:
Three of the most prominent climate change impacts in Delaware are sea level rise, increased temperatures, and heavy precipitation and flooding. Check out the fact sheets below for an overview of these impacts and the potential actions Delaware could take to address them.
Public participation has been essential to developing Delaware’s Climate Action Plan.
In addition to public workshops, online surveys and comment forms soliciting public input, DNREC sought insight from Delaware-based technical stakeholders in the buildings, electric power, industrial transportation and waste sectors — along with staff from 10 state agencies — on potential actions to minimize greenhouse gas emissions and maximize resilience to climate change impacts.
Input received from all these engagement activities helped inform Delaware’s Climate Action Plan, which is set for release in winter 2021.
More than 250 people participated in an initial round of public workshops, held in each county in March 2020.
A follow-up series of virtual workshops held in September and October of 2020 attracted nearly 390 attendees across five sessions.
Online surveys hosted on this website in the spring and fall of 2020 — aimed at gathering input from those unable to attend a public workshop — garnered more than 520 responses.
Residents, businesses and organizations submitted more than 50 additional written comments and questions on the plan.