Date of Completion

Spring 5-1-2021

Thesis Advisor(s)

Carol Atkinson-Palombo

Honors Major

Environmental Studies


Climate change is an issue that is plaguing the world with a slow burn, that while recognizable when looking at long-term projections, is still not provided the attention it needs at times. This is seen on a large scale, from local to international, and there are continued questions of who is responsible, and what must be done to ensure that there is a future for humans. Currently, storms are becoming more intense and frequent, sea levels are rising, temperatures are rising, fragile ecosystems are being destroyed, and the list goes on; all while fossil fuels are still burned, and decisions are made without considering the well-being and future of the environment. Amidst all of this doom and gloom there are those who are taking action and trying to prepare for every tomorrow, with the mindset that changes must be made in order to ensure that a sustainable future, in which generations to come aren’t plagued by the greed and inaction of those in the past. In order to make these plans, it is important to understand the science behind climate change and the interconnectedness of its effects. These issues must be approached cohesively from international, national, statewide, and community levels. When looking at Connecticut in particular, the effects of climate change are present, and actions have been taken in the form of adaptation and mitigation. In order to respond to climate change, towns must consider social, economic, environmental, and political factors as well as data accessibility. With Connecticut being on Long Island Sound, there are both coastal and inland towns which are likely to assess climate change differently due to the main impacts that are experienced. For example, Fairfield and Bridgeport are coastal towns, while West Hartford and Hartford are inland. The purpose of this paper is to delve further into how these towns are responding to climate change and to look at the subject as a whole, while also considering how current events are playing a role in the response to climate change as well as how this will impact the future.