Ninety-two artists from across the nation will have their work featured in the upcoming Fifth National Climate Assessment (NCA5). This work harnesses the power of art to advance the national conversation around climate change.

Today, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) announced the top five award winners of Art x Climate, the first-ever call for visual art for the fifth National Climate Assessment (NCA5). Acknowledging the need for broad engagement to address the urgent climate crisis, and recognizing the power of art to shape and drive conversations across issues, Art x Climate invited artists to explore the themes of NCA5 by visualizing climate change in the United States. 

“Art has the power to make abundantly clear how climate change is threatening the people and places we love, our livelihoods, and our economy,” said Allison Crimmins, Director of the Fifth National Climate Assessment. “Importantly, art also has the power to motivate action, and to spur creative responses to the most pressing challenges. We are grateful for and inspired by all the amazing submissions we received from talented artists across the country!” 

Background on Art x Climate Led by OSTP and the U.S. Global Change Research Program, Art x Climate received more than 800 submissions from every corner of the nation. The effort seeks to highlight new perspectives and broaden the growing community of people working towards climate solutions. Finalists were separated into youth (ages 13 to 17) and adult categories, and works were selected by a panel of experts at the art-environment interface. The jury panel evaluated the submissions against criteria such as originality, creative design, and consistency with climate science. The award winners’ work will be featured in the upcoming NCA5 alongside 87 additional finalists, including 10 youth artists, whose original pieces were selected for inclusion in the report. The full gallery of selected art will be available when NCA5 is published later this year.


Tammy West (Austin, TX) – “Keep it Together”
Medium: Site-specific environmental art

Artist statement: Texas and much of the Western United States have been experiencing climate change-induced severe drought. This site-specific piece focuses on our collective climate grief. “Keep It Together” conceptually wills climate change and the drought to end by literally tying cracked earth back together. I wanted this piece to convey the desperate situation that we are in by mimicking surgical sutures or stitches with red string and nails. If we must resort to tying our world back together, we have nothing. A high quality version of this image is available here.

Simona Clausnitzer (Port Townsend, WA) – “In the Eye of the Storm”
Medium: Linocut

Artist statement: This piece illustrates the lived experiences of hurricanes, specifically Hurricane Maria. As the climate continues to change, catastrophic storms are expected to become more severe in the Caribbean region. Mirroring a local memorial, shoes follow the road to calmer places. The piece is a composite overlay of three linocuts depicting the storm itself, the infrastructural impacts, and the human impacts. It can be interpreted literally, as a hurricane and its numerous effects, or symbolically: watching ourselves twist in a storm system of inequities that caused Puerto Rico to be without power for as many as 328 days after Maria. The impacts are still being felt years later. As the eye of the storm, we witness all. A high quality version of this image is available here.

Taelyn B. (Boise, ID, 11th grade) – “Endangered West”
Medium: Colored pencil

Artist statement: My drawing depicts 11 endangered species and their different ecosystems found in the Western United States. The most difficult challenge was making this piece cohesive, even across different habitats that normally wouldn’t be found together. I live in Boise, Idaho, and am surrounded by wild places that I consider part of my home. I want to ensure that these ecosystems are protected. I hope viewers come away with an appreciation for our Western wild places and the importance of biodiversity and healthy ecosystems threatened by climate change and habitat loss. A high quality version of this image is available here.

Amelia K. (Pennington, NJ, 10th grade)– “Cautionary tale”
Medium: Gouache

Artist statement: In my piece, I focused on air pollution and fossil fuels. I showed factories pumping toxic gasses and fuels into the air. I also included a figure drawing childlike images of factors that have or will be destroyed by climate change. Broken green crayons symbolize the destruction of nature as climate change worsens. This is a completely possible future for our planet, with bumblebee death tolls rising due to climate change and clean water becoming inaccessible for the less fortunate. Without action this problem will only worsen. A high quality version of this image is available here.

Ritika S. (Concord, NC, 8th grade)– “Redrawing The Earth”
Medium: Colored pencil

Artist statement: In my art, I try to convey that we can help reverse the effects of climate change. One hand is erasing the pollution caused by industrialization the world over, and the other is redrawing actions to restore the Earth’s beauty. I have always tried to help out the Earth, through stream clean-ups and more. I hope people learn from my art that they can help change the world by just doing simple things like driving less, not littering, and maybe even setting up solar panels or wind turbines. The effects of climate change are only in our hands, so we should do whatever we can to help. A high quality version of this image is available here.

More on the National Climate Assessment: The National Climate Assessment is the preeminent source of climate information for the United States, mandated by the Global Change Research Act of 1990. This report assesses the science of climate change, its impacts, and options for reducing present and future risk. It evaluates climate impacts across a wide range of interests, including water, forests and ecosystems, coasts and oceans, agriculture and rural communities, the built environment, energy and transportation, health and air quality, and economic and social systems. The Fifth National Climate Assessment is expected late 2023.  Learn more at:


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