Past Seminar

A Discussion of the Independent Risk Assessment for Risky Business: The Economic Risks of Climate Change in the United States

Jun 26, 2014

About the Event

Panel discussion

How much economic risk does the nation face from the impacts of climate change? The Risky Business initiative—a project of Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Office of Hank Paulson, and Next Generation—works to answer that question. Using the best information available, the initiative outlines the range of climate futures that the United States might expect in major economic sectors and by geographic region. It also examines the likelihood of these futures and the potential economic consequences for American businesses and households. The initiative does not advocate any particular policy, industry, or personal response to climate change but instead seeks to provide government, finance, business, and household decisionmakers with the information necessary to make their own risk management decisions.

At this RFF seminar, Trevor Houser, lead author of the independent risk assessment supporting the Risky Business initiative, and his colleagues will present an overview of the methods, data, original research, and key findings in the assessment. A panel of experts will then offer additional perspectives.


8:30 a.m.

Light breakfast available​

9:00 a.m.


9:10 a.m.

Overview of Risky Business

  • Trevor Houser, Partner, The Rhodium Group and Technical Lead, Independent Risk Assessment for Risky Business
  • Solomon Hsiang, Assistant Professor of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley
  • Robert Kopp, Associate Professor, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences; and Associate Director, Rutgers Energy Institute, Rutgers University

9:40 a.m.

Panel Discussion: A Technical Review
Moderated by Molly Macauley, Vice President for Research, RFF

  • Richard Duke, Deputy Director for Climate Policy at the Domestic Policy Council and Associate Director at the Council on Environmental Quality, the White House
  • Adele Morris, Fellow and Policy Director, Climate and Energy Economics, The Brookings Institution
  • Piers Sellers, Deputy Director of Science and Exploration Directorate, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

10:15 a.m.


10:30​ a.m.




  • Phil Sharp, Fellow, The Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs; former President, RFF
  • Molly K. Macauley, Vice President for Research and Senior Fellow, Resources for the Future