Reducing carbon emissions is needed to tackle climate change. However, despite the large uncertainties surrounding the issue, most policy design processes employ a predict-then-act approach. This paper applies a System-of-Systems perspective and exploratory modeling method to support the design of an adaptive policy. Using a case in the Dutch residential sector, we use the SoS perspective as a way to decompose the policy issue into interdependent relevant policy systems. This representation of the policy system provides a framework to test a large number of hypotheses about the evolution of the system's behavior by way of computational experiments, which form the core of the exploratory modeling method. As some of the system uncertainties are resolved, policies are adapted so that policy goals can still be met. In particular, in a situation in which the realized emission level misses the target, a new set of conditions can be identified to bring the level back to the intended target.