Understanding Climate Change

In Delaware, scientists, state agencies and local partners are working together to understand how climate change is affecting our state.

What do we know about climate change and Delaware?

Cover of the Climate Change Impact AssessmentClimate change is already affecting Delaware. Over the coming years, we can anticipate even worse effects–more days of dangerously high heat, heavier precipitation, and sea level rise that leads to significant flooding.

The Delaware Climate Change Impact Assessment breaks down past and projected future climate trends in Delaware, and what these mean for Delaware’s public health, water resources, agriculture, infrastructure, and ecosystems. Read the full report or a 12-page summary.

The Delaware Sea Level Rise Vulnerability Assessment takes a deep dive into the impacts that sea level rise will have on the state. The assessment includes:

  • Causes of sea level rise
  • Sea level rise trends in Delaware
  • Future scenarios for sea level rise in Delaware
  • Mapping and data for over 75 natural resources and structures that will be impacted by rising seas, like schools, fire stations, homes, wetlands, factories, wells, roads and habitats.

Tools for understanding the impacts of climate change on Delaware

These tools provide a visual of the Delaware’s past, current and future conditions, and the effects of climate change across the state.

Delaware Climate Projections Portal

The Delaware Climate Projections Portal provides data on Delaware’s climate indicators like temperature, precipitation, and length of growing season, tracked back to 1950 and projected out to 2100. Users can compare past climate conditions in Delaware to conditions we can expect with climate change based on the level of our greenhouse gas emissions.

A graph of average temperatures from 1950 to 2100.

The portal is hosted by the University of Delaware as part of the Office of the State Climatologist.

Delaware Flood Planning Tool

The DNREC Flood Planning Tool is an interactive web map application designed to aid you in researching your flood risk in the Delaware.

A screenshot of the flood planning tool, showing a map with sea level rise predictions shown.