Abstract The climate change projections for the Caatinga biome this century are for an increase in temperature and reduction in rainfall, leading to aridization and plant cover dominated by Cactaceae. The objective of this study was to model the potential distribution of Epiphyllum phyllanthus (L.) Haw., a cactus that is native to the Caatinga biome, considering two possible future climate scenarios, to assess this species’ spatio-temporal response to these climate change, and thus to evaluate the need or not for conservation measures. For this purpose, we obtained biogeographic information on the target species from biodiversity databases, choosing nine environmental variables and applying the MaxEnt algorithm. We considered the time intervals 2041-2060 and 2061-2080, centered on 2050 and 2070, respectively, and the greenhouse gas scenarios RCP4.5 and 8.5. For all the scenarios considered, the models generated for 2050 and 2070 projected drastic contraction (greater than 80%) for the areas of potential occurrence of the species in relation to the present potential. The remaining areas were found to be concentrated in the northern portion of the biome, specifically in the northern part of the state of Ceará, which has particular characteristics.