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Mainstreaming adaptation in EU policies

Adaptation means anticipating the adverse effects of climate change and taking appropriate action to prevent or minimise the damage they can cause. Early action will save on damage costs later. Adaptation strategies are needed at all levels of administration, from the local up to the international level.

Mainstreaming climate change adaptation in EU policies is one of the pillars of the European Commission's 2009 White Paper on adaptation . In the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth , the following is stated on combating climate change: 'We must also strengthen our economies' resilience to climate risks, and our capacity for disaster prevention and response'. To achieve this goal, adaptation actions should be integrated into the EU's sector policies and be focused on the most vulnerable areas in Europe (e.g. mountains, coastal areas, river flood prone areas, Mediterranean, Arctic). EU policies for which such mainstreaming is ongoing or explored are

  1. Agriculture and forestry
  2. Biodiversity/nature protection (terrestrial, freshwater)
  3. Coastal areas
  4. Disaster risk reduction
  5. Financial instruments and insurance
  6. Health (human, animal, plant)
  7. Infrastructure (transport, energy, other)
  8. Marine (biodiversity) and fisheries
  9. Water management

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