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The Fifth National Climate Assessment

The Fifth U.S. National Climate Assessment, released on  November  14, 2023, demonstrates how climate change is affecting America’s working lands, how communities are reducing their risks, and how winning solutions to climate change can be found in productive landscapes.

Mandated by the Global Change Research Act of 1990 and produced approximately every four years, the U.S. National Climate Assessment provides authoritative scientific information about climate change risks, impacts, and responses in the U.S.  Climate change is affecting agriculture, forests, rural communities, water, and natural resources across the U.S., and will continue to over the next century through changing temperatures, precipitation patterns, drought, flooding, and increasingly more severe extreme events, such as wildfires. 

  • Climate change affects the livelihoods of USDA’s stakeholders, the economic conditions in which they operate, and the choices they must make regarding their operations in response to changing conditions.
  • While specific climate impacts vary based on regional conditions and context, no region of the Nation is immune from the impacts of climate change.
  • Impacts are not limited to U.S. agricultural and forest producers; they are felt globally through the supply chains that depend on working lands in the U.S. They are also felt by consumers in the U.S. who depend on globally-integrated food and forest-product supply chains.
  • Innovations in adapting to changes in climate show promise and will be central to the future success of working lands. However, frontline, rural, Tribal, and other historically underserved communities are disproportionately affected and may have differing capacities to adapt.
  • Agricultural and forest production have central roles to play in reducing the intensity of climate change and its impacts over the next century.


View our Climate Solutions page to learn more about how USDA is meeting these challenges.

For more information about the Fifth National Climate Assessment visit