• Views 100
  • Favorites
Photo by Brad Weaver via Unsplash


MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative


11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Social Studies, Economics, Civics, English Language Arts, Engineering

Resource Types

  • Podcast, 13 minutes, 55 seconds
  • Worksheet
  • Interactive Media
  • Data
  • Lesson Plan
  • Activity - Classroom

Regional Focus




Adaptation and Climate Change Costs

Ask a Question

  • This lesson introduces students to the financial costs already experienced because of climate change and highlights some ingenious solutions to help reduce the costs of investing in climate solutions.
  • The lesson includes a teacher's guide, a podcast, three activities, data on the costs of extreme weather events, and case studies of adaptation projects.
Teaching Tips


  • This lesson is a great way to integrate solutions thinking and introduce students to multisolving.
  • The teacher's guide includes discussion questions, an answer key, and background information.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Each activity can be used as a standalone, in sequence, or integrated with other curriculum needs.
  • Although the information in the lesson is relevant everywhere, the data presented in the second activity focuses on the United States.
  • Students should be comfortable reading graphs and charts and should know that climate change can increase the severity or frequency of extreme weather events before starting the lesson.


  • Extra care should be given to students whose families have been affected by storms, floods, fires, or other extreme weather events.
  • To make the final activity more relevant to students outside of the United States, students can be tasked with researching a case study in their country or region and answering the questions accordingly.
  • This resource can also be used in math or statistics classes during lessons about analyzing and interpreting data and in English classes during lessons about communicating complex information.
  • Use this online course as an extension to learn more about climate adaptation.
Scientist Notes
This resource is a guide for teachers that includes skills learned, standards, core ideas, a teacher guide, student handouts, and a ~14 minute podcast, all of which discuss the need for financial investments to slow down climate change and prepare for the impacts of climate change. The information is well-sourced and researched and would be a great addition to a class discussing different needs to address climate change. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
      • HS-ESS3-6 Use a computational representation to illustrate the relationships among Earth systems and how those relationships are being modified due to human activity.
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • HS-ETS1-3 Evaluate a solution to a complex real-world problem based on prioritized criteria and trade-offs that account for a range of constraints, including cost, safety, reliability, and aesthetics, as well as possible social, cultural, and environmental impacts.
    • LS2: Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics
      • HS-LS2-7 Design, evaluate, and refine a solution for reducing the impacts of human activities on the environment and biodiversity.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Science & Technical Subjects (6-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.2 Determine the central ideas or conclusions of a text; summarize complex concepts, processes, or information presented in a text by paraphrasing them in simpler but still accurate terms.
  • Related Resources


    Login to leave a review