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Climate change is conventionally recognized as a large-scale issue resolved through regional or national policy initiatives. However, little research has been done to directly evaluate local climate change action plans. This study examines 40 recently adopted local climate change action plans in the US and analyzes how well they recognize the concepts of climate change and prepare for climate change mitigation and adaptation. The results indicate that local climate change action plans have a high level of “awareness”, moderate “analysis capabilities” for climate change, and relatively limited “action approaches” for climate change mitigation. The study also identifies specific factors influencing the quality of these local jurisdictional plans. Finally, it provides policy recommendations to improve planning for climate change at the local level.