Planning for Climate Change in Newton


Mayor Fuller has made a commitment to preparing Newton for the impacts of climate change through both mitigation and resiliency planning. The City of Newton will work to honor this commitment with the creation of three separate climate planning documents. The first of these is a Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment and Action Plan, a document which identifies Newton’s strengths and vulnerabilities in the face of Climate Change impacts and focuses on actions to increase resiliency in the face of climate change (e.g., heat events, flooding, more frequent and more intense storms). The second document is a Climate Action Plan, which focuses on efforts that the City can undertake to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. The third document is an updated Hazard Mitigation Plan, detailing procedures for addressing large-scale natural disasters or other major hazards. Public engagement is critical to the success of these planning efforts.

How to Get Involved

  • To see a complete calendar of all climate planning events and opportunities to engage click here.
  • If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please send an email to
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Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment and Action Plan

Thanks to all of those who supported the creation of and attended the workshops for the Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment and Action Plan! The plan was officially adopted by the Newton City Council on December 17th, 2018 and our next step is to get the plan formally approved by the State Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. Once approved by EOEEA, the City of Newton will be a part of the state's Municipal Vulnerabilities Preparedness Program. 

Please see the final Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment and Action Plan in documents library below. 

Throughout 2017 and early 2018, with MAPC’s guidance, City staff worked with representatives of Green Newton and the Newton-Needham Chamber of Commerce to develop a draft Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment (CCVA) and Action Plan. To qualify for the state’s Municipal Vulnerabilities Preparedness (MVP) Program and the grant opportunities it provides, the City will now engage in a robust community engagement effort with broad representation from the City’s residents and businesses to revise and prioritize the Action Plan to increase Newton’s resiliency. The City has been awarded Planning Grant through the MVP Program to conduct a community engagement process to produce a robust assessment of Newton’s strengths and vulnerabilities and a prioritized list of action items. 

Documents Library

Materials from October 29th Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Workshop

Climate Action Plan

Please be sure to join us on January 28th, 2019 for a discussion about the Climate Action Plan with the Zoning and Planning Committee. This will be the first step in getting the Climate Action Plan adopted by the City Council. After we receive feedback from the Zoning and Planning Committee, we will host our final public workshop on the Climate Action Plan on March 21st, 2019. More information to come! 

The City is also undertaking is the creation of a Climate Action Plan (CAP), which will detail efforts the City can undertake to decrease greenhouse gas emissions by increasing energy efficiency and “greening” our power sources. Public input will be received throughout a lengthy community engagement process by means of an online questionnaire, workshops, and public hearings. The questionnaire for Community Ideas is now closed but thanks to the huge number participants who submitted!

Thanks to all those who turned out to make our Kick-off Discussion for Newton's Climate Action Plan great! The discussion was so passionate and thoughtful, we can't wait to see what the synthesis of all your ideas tells us about the future of climate planning in Newton.

All the materials from the workshop are available below and check-out our new photo gallery with snapshots from the event!

Documents Library

Materials from December 5th Public Facilities Presentation and Discussion

Materials from October 23rd Kick-off Roundtable Discussion

Newton-Specific Documents

Documents Prepared by Climate Action Plan Intern

Articles of Note

Reference/Research Documents from Other Areas

Hazard Mitigation Plan

Every community in Massachusetts must have an up-to-date Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP) that details the important chains-of-command and procedures needed during times of emergency. Newton’s HMP was approved by the state in 2012, but “expired” in 2017. The City is working to update its HMP in conjunction with the Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment and Climate Action Plan efforts to ensure that impacts of climate change are appropriately incorporated.

Documents Library

Full schedule of events (to be updated as dates are finalized, last update 1/17/19) . . . 

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