Our Impact

Fighting Climate Change with Data: Risks, Resilience, and Mitigation

         CODE has worked since 2015 to promote the use of data to fight climate change. In that year we attended the historic COP21 meeting – the meeting that produced the Paris Agreement – and held a side event on climate data co-hosted by the Government of Mexico, the Government of France (Etalab), and the International Open Data Charter. This Climate Open Data Roundtable began to identify some of the most valuable datasets to mitigate climate change and improve resilience. CODE also published a widely shared Huffington Post article outlining a framework for using climate-relevant data for climate monitoring, adaptation, mitigation, and international engagement.     
        The COP21 roundtable and a follow-up workshop at the 2016 Open Government Partnership Summit launched a project to make climate data more accessible and usable. Drawing on these convenings, CODE and the World Resources Institute (WRI) co-authored the initial draft of a guide to using climate data for national and local governments, which the Open Data Charter released for public comment in 2017. WRI and the Open Data Charter have now published Open Up Climate Data: Using Open Data to Advance Climate Action, a guide that is being pilot-tested in several Latin American countries. CODE’s work on this project was funded by the International Development Research Centre through the Open Data for Development network.
         With the Biden administration committed to addressing climate change through every Federal agency, CODE is now partnering with government and the private sector to apply data to this global threat. We’re working to develop new data-driven solutions for assessing the risks of climate change, developing resilience strategies, protecting our oceans, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In May 2021, CODE and Ocean Conservancy co-published a paper, Challenges and Opportunities for Ocean Data to Advance Conservation and Management, based largely on a roundtable held in collaboration with NOAA, Amazon, Esri, and Microsoft.
         In June 2021, CODE and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) co-hosted a Roundtable on Data for Climate Risk Assessment in Vulnerable Communities. CODE’s Briefing Paper for this event presented frameworks for evaluating both the likelihood of climate hazards and community vulnerability, and reviewed some of the most important datasets and models to support this work. The Roundtable included a public Webinar featuring leaders from NOAA, the Department of Commerce, the Council on Environmental Quality, local and private-sector climate data organizations, and Amazon Web Services and the Amazon Sustainability Data Initiative, which supported CODE’s work on this project. In August, 2021, CODE published a Summary Report of the Roundtable’s findings and a Climate Risk Data Resource Hub for public use. 
         In February 2022, CODE held a Roundtable for the Bezos Earth Fund to explore a possible national data resource for environmental action. The Roundtable included 170 participants in 37 breakout sessions over two days - the largest Roundtable CODE has ever held - and was followed by a CODE workshop for Bezos Earth Fund grantees in June. Based on that Roundtable and additional research, CODE has now published two Resource Hubs on Environment and Climate Data, one focused on Data Portals and Datasets and one on Organizations and Resources, including research studies, use cases, and best practices.
         In 2022, CODE also began a collaboration with the Partnership in Statistics for Development in the 21st Century (PARIS21), hosted within the Statistics and Data Directorate of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). CODE drafted a paper published by PARIS21, Envisioning a Climate Change Data Ecosystem, that laid out the case for a coordinated approach to using data for climate action on a national level. CODE, PARIS21, and Open Data Watch are developing and pilot-testing a model for a Climate Change Data Ecosystem (CCDE) approach that can apply data for climate adaptation in countries around the world. As part of that work, CODE has launched its Climate Data for Adaptation and Resilience Typology (Climate DART) to facilitate the use of global and local data for climate action worldwide. The Climate DART identifies and prioritizes the focus areas, drivers, and relevant factors that contribute to the risk of climate impacts or support adaptation and resilience.
        At the start of 2023, CODE published an article in Apolitical to spread awareness about the need for global and local data to adapt to climate change. In the article, CODE’s president proposes creating a new knowledge network that would help countries apply local data using a shared platform of strategies, resources, and tools.
         CODE has made climate change a top priority for our work. We’re developing new projects with our government and private-sector partners as we explore data-driven approaches to improving resilience, increasing community-level data capacity, and developing mitigation strategies. We welcome ideas for collaboration in this important area. Please reach out to us at contact@odenterprise.org.