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National circumstances relevant to adaptation actions

Slovenia’s landscape diversity is a feature that counterbalances its small size of only 20.271 km2. As explained in the article Slovenia in geographical typifications and regionalizations of Europe (authors Ciglic, R. and Perko, D., Geografski vestnik 84-1, 2012, 23-37, available at https://www.researchgate.ne[…]_regionalizations_of_Europe) Slovenia’s landscape diversity is due to its position at the intersection of four major European geographical units: the Alps, the Mediterranean, the Pannonian Basin, and the Dinaric Alps. The geographical typification, which is primarily based on natural landscape elements and land use, divides Slovenia into these 4 macro-regions, but the majority of the landscape is characterised by transition and influences between these regions. There is a great natural value to that but also a challenge that demands greater attention devoted to the environment and more detailed spatial planning.

The European Landscape Classification that uses data on climate, elevation, soil and land use, classifies Slovenia under three types Mediterranean, Continental and Alpine. Due to such diverse geology in such a small area, there are greater landslide and debris-flow susceptibilities, even more pronounced as triggering factors such as 24h rainfall and average rainfall intensity are changing and are further projected to change due to climate change by the end of the century. The Map of Biogeographical Regions, generally based on natural vegetation, puts Slovenia into Alpine and Continental region, only partially touching Pannonian and Mediterranean regions. As much as 58.3% of the surface of Slovenia is covered in forests, composing 70% of Natura 2000 sites. Natura 2000 sites cover about 37% of the country’s territory, while more than half of the territory is areas of special interest. The great amount of animal and plant species as well as diversity of ecosystems that are found in Slovenia contribute to country’s resilience to climate change impacts. On the other hand, there is also greater risk of broader forest fires and other consequences of extreme weather events. The Bioclimatic Map of Europe divides Slovenia into Temperate Oceanic bioclimate to the West, and Temperate Continental bioclimate to the East. Slovenia has a warm humid temperate climate but the climate is not typical due to the transit character and variability of its territorial types. Data show that the climate in Slovenia has already significantly changed in the period up to year 2021, mean temperature being more than 2,5 degrees higher than in pre-industrial times. With rising temperature other climate characteristics are changing as well. The decreasing precipitation trend in the west of the country has slowed over the last decade and the climate projections predict that it would turn into a rising one across the whole country in the coming decades. Snow cover, as an important natural water retention element, has halved in the last six decades. That has already a significant influence on the river flow regime, with lower late spring peak and higher late autumn peak. Although the extreme events are rare by definition and therefore it is difficult to detect their significant change it is evident that all climate indicators for extreme heat, extreme precipitation and drought show increasing trend for their intensity as well as for their frequency and durability.

The divisions confirm that it is difficult to assign a single label to a country with such a wide variety of landscapes and regions as it’s the case of Slovenia. This contributes to its resilience in the face of large scale extreme weather events, but also add to its vulnerability in terms of many species and habitats that are difficult to maintain in good status with the fast changing climate or higher risks for avalanches, floods and other events linked to increasingly more present extreme weather.
As reported in the Integrated National Energy and Climate Plan of the Republic of Slovenia (2021, available at: https://www.energetika-portal.si/[…]/nepn_eng.pdf), Slovenia is facing demographic changes that will have a major impact on the future development of society and quality of life. They are reflected in the increase in the number of people over 65, in the low fertility rate and the decrease in the population in the age group of 20-64. Demographic changes are also exerting pressure on the financial sustainability of social protection systems and the pension system.

Slovenia’s Development Report 2020 (IMAD, available at: https://www.umar.gov.si/[…]/Development_report_2020.pdf) also reports about development risks in this area, that social protection systems are insufficiently adapted to demographic change. Slovenia has so far managed to keep age-related expenditure below the EU average, but long-term expenditure projections show a strong negative impact on the long-term sustainability of public finances if current policies remain unchanged and people continue to retire relatively early. The dedicated resources (social contributions) are already insufficient to cover all expenditure necessary to retain adequate pensions and easily accessible public health services. Unresolved funding issues are also among the main obstacles to establishing a new systemic regulation of long-term care.

Demographic growth in Slovenia does thus not threaten biodiversity, unlike in some other parts of the world. Nevertheless, it can be expected that the pressures on the natural environment will continue to increase and the conservation status of plant and animal species will decline in relation to the decrease in ecosystem diversity. Negative impacts of the spread of invasive non-native species and climate change are becoming more pronounced. All the key reasons are linked to human activities and their effect on the environment, which results in the loss, fragmentation and degradation of ecosystems and habitats in terms of both species and populations.

Demographic situation poses significant element in the overall vulnerability to climate change as it's increasing the size of vulnerable groups while decreasing the public finances available to cope with the raising costs of climate related disaster events.
Information in this chapter is gathered together from various sources, Integrated National Energy and Climate Plan, the Development Report 2020 and Statistical Office Data. The Government of the Republic of Slovenia adopted Slovenia's Development Strategy 2030 (SRS2030) in 2017, the country's umbrella development document. As pointed out in the SRS2030, Slovenia's future development will depend very much on its ability to respond and adapt to trends and challenges in the global environment. Trends point to profound changes, especially in demographic trends, pressures on ecosystems, competition for global resources, and economic development. Co-operation at global, European, regional and national levels is thus increasingly important.

Before the outbreak of the economic crisis in 2008, Slovenia had achieved high economic growth in the preceding decade, with many structural deficiencies indicating that the development model before the crisis was unsustainable. During the crisis, there was a sharp decline in GDP, which severely undermined economic stability and had a negative impact on the well-being of the population. In 2014, Slovenia started catching up with economically more developed countries after five years, and the stability of the banking system and public finances has also recently been observed again in the crisis.

In 2016–2018, Slovenia was narrowing its development gap with the EU average, the development in the period of economic growth was generally inclusive and the efficiency of energy and resource consumption increased slightly. Since 2016, the gap with the average gross GDP per capita in the EU, which widened in 2009–2012, has been rapidly narrowing amid strong economic growth. With the adoption of comprehensive measures to stabilise public finances and the recovery of economic activity, the public finance situation also improved significantly after 2013. With the recovery of all statistical regions, regional disparities have remained stable. Disparities between the cohesion regions have increased somewhat, but remain below the highest level from 2007. The economic upturn was reflected in an increase in employment and income and accelerated robotisation and automation of production. In 2020, with the consequences of Covid-19 outbreak, Statistical Office reports that GDP decreased by 5.5%.

GHG emissions have declined in the context of lower economic activity in the crisis, but per unit of GDP, their level remains higher than the EU average. Increasing transit road traffic and overall unsustainable mobility are particularly problematic. Lower consumption in households and industry reduces energy consumption but remains relatively high per unit of GDP due to the high proportion of energy-intensive activities. By 2030, taking into account the dimension of the Energy Union, Slovenia will actively seek to gradually decarbonise the energy-intensive industry and provide financial incentives for restructuring production processes.

The Slovenian economy is above average based on the use of raw materials, which is reflected in its lower material efficiency and its competitiveness. In some areas, such as the share of renewable energy sources (RES) and organic farming, Slovenia is more successful than the EU average. Slovenia also has favourable natural resources, coastal and marine resources and diverse biodiversity, but due to the inadequate use of natural resources (especially in the areas of urbanisation, agriculture and water management), the conservation status of species and their habitats is mostly unfavourable.

Adapting to climate change while moving to a climate-neutral and circular economy would enable Slovenia to preserve natural resources, long term competitiveness and quality of life, but that requires changing production and consumption models at the European level and beyond.

Reporting updated until: 2021-03-15

Item Status Links
National adaptation strategy (NAS)
  • actual NAS - adopted
National adaptation plan (NAP)
Sectoral adaptation plan (SAP)
Climate change impact and vulnerability assessment
  • being developed
  • completed
Meteorological observations
  • Established
Climate projections and services
  • Established
Adaptation portals and platforms
  • Established
Monitoring, reporting and evaluation (MRE) indicators and methodologies
Key reports and publications
National communication to the UNFCCC
Governance regulation adaptation reporting
Systematic observations and measurements of the climate and water variables are carried out by the Slovenian Environmental Agency.

To monitor the weather, climate and water properties, the Agency employs a network of classical and automatic measurements of meteorological and hydrological variables. A substantial archive of historical measurements is especially valuable in monitoring the state of the climate, as only on the basis of long homogeneous datasets of climate variables can the changes of climate be identified.

Hydrological data has been collected in an organized manner on the territory of Slovenia for more than a hundred years, and the national database already contains around 35 million units of hydrological data. As with the assessment of climate change itself, long datasets of historical hydrological data are valuable for assessing the climate change impacts on the water cycle. Within the Operational Programme of Environmental and Transport Infrastructure Development (OP ETID) for the period 2007–2013, the Agency carried out the project Upgrading the system for monitoring and analysing the state of the water environment in Slovenia (called BOBER). The aim of the project was to increase the country’s capacity for comprehensive monitoring of the water cycle. As part of the project, both the hydrological and meteorological measurement network were significantly upgraded and renewed.

In the quality control process, meteorological and hydrological data are systematically checked. Data quality control is then upgraded by a time series homogenization process, by means of which artificial influences on measurements are excluded from time series (e.g. change of instruments, change of the surroundings of measuring point).

Homogenized time series are the basis for studies of past climate change. In 2013, the project “Climate Variability of Slovenia” was completed at the Agency, in the framework of which the time series of main climate variables were systematically homogenized and their trends were calculated. Upon completion, the time series are regularly updated with new measurements. In 2020, the homogenization process was repeated, mainly due to larger inhomogeneities in the measurement time series, which were the consequence of the above mentioned upgrade of the measuring network completed in 2015. In 2020, a new World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) reference period ended and by the end of 2021 climate normals for the new reference period (1991-2020) will be prepared.

Based on the verified measurements and homogenized time series, Slovenian Environment Agency regularly monitors the state of the climate on a monthly basis and evaluates deviations of climate variables from long-term reference values (http://meteo.arso.gov.si/met/sl/climate/current/). The state of hydrological conditions for both surface and groundwater is monitored on a regular basis (http://www.arso.gov.si/vode/podatki/amp/ and http://www.arso.gov.si/vode/podatki/ podzem_vode_amp /) and at the annual level in the form of annual reports (http://www.arso.gov.si/[…]/ and http://www.arso.gov.si/vode / underground% 20water /). In addition to regular monitoring in the event of extreme weather or hydrological events, special reports are prepared, which include a detailed analysis of the extreme event and an assessment of exceptionality in the context of climate variability and change - http://www.arso.gov.si/[…]/poro%c4%8dila%20in%20publikacije and http://meteo.arso.gov.si/met/sl/climate/natural-hazards/.

Homogenized time series of the main climate variables were the basis for the preparation of climate scenarios on a local scale. The first climate change projections were prepared at the Agency in 2014 on the basis of the IPCC SRES greenhouse gas emission scenarios (SRES A1B). In 2016, the Agency launched the project “Climate Change Assessment in Slovenia until the end of the 21st century”. Within this project, more detailed climate projections were prepared for Slovenia on a local scale, based on model simulations with new IPCC greenhouse gas emission scenarios (Representative Concentration Pathways – RCP, from the IPCC 5th Assessment Report).

The new climate projections for Slovenia are based on the simulations of global and regional climate models from the EURO-CORDEX project and taking into account historical homogenized measurements for model bias adjustment and downscaling to 1 km resolution. The projections were prepared for three future periods (2011-2040, 2041-2070 and 2071-2100), taking into account the three possible pathways of greenhouse gas concentrations (low-emission scenario RCP2.6, stabilisation scenario RCP4.5 and high-emission scenario RCP8.5). The projected changes were assessed for basic climate variables (air and soil temperatures, surface, groundwater and sea temperatures, precipitation, reference evapotranspiration, wind and solar radiation) as well as for derived, water-cycle related variables (soil water content, river discharges, groundwater recharge and phenological development of selected plant species). A detailed project report is published on the website http://meteo.arso.gov.si/met/sl/climate/change/, where short summaries of the project report can be found as well. A user friendly web application – “Climate change atlas” allows users to easily browse the climate projections in graphical form.

Based on the projections for climate variables, assessments of climate change impacts on individual sectors (tourism, health, water management…) are currently being prepared. However, some sector-oriented assessments of the climate change impacts have already been prepared (water, agriculture, energy…). Climate change projections summaries and bias adjusted and downscaled simulations on a daily scale are openly available for users through data point (https://podatki.gov.si/data[…]%2C+projekcije%2C+Slovenija).
Climate projections for Slovenia are based on the model ensemble from EURO-CORDEX database. In the EURO-CORDEX project database, 18 combinations of global and regional climate models were available at the beginning of the project “Climate Change Assessment in Slovenia until the end of the 21st century” carried out by the Slovenian Environment Agency starting in 2016. To avoid an excessive influence of more frequently represented models on the final results, the choice was made to select model combinations. At the same time only models that satisfactorily simulated the past climate over Slovenia were selected. Given the two limitations, there was a choice of 14 different combinations of global and regional models.

Using the measured values interpolated on the model spatial network, the Agency analysed the statistics of daily and monthly values of average air temperature and precipitation. The comparison between measured and model values was made by climate regions. The quality of monthly values was determined by the deviation of the median of the model values from the measured values for each month of the year in the comparison period 1981–2005. The Slovenian Environment Agency only selected models that matched the measurements relatively well (statistics of daily and monthly values of temperature and precipitation by climatic regions of Slovenia). Another aim was also to maximize the diversity between combinations of global and regional climate models in order to cover as much of the uncertainty that stems from the characteristics of both global and regional models as possible.

Out of 14 combinations of global and regional climate models, six were finally selected. To study the impact of global models on regional results, the Agency chose two combinations with the same global model and two combinations with the same regional model to study the impact of regional models.

To eliminate systematic errors of the climate model simulations, the Agency used a modified method of quantile mapping. Corrections of model simulations were made for the period 1981–2100, and the comparison period for estimating bias was the thirty-year period 1981–2010. To eliminate the bias, daily ground measurement data interpolated to the model grid was used.

Elimination of the model bias was done for each variable separately. The Agency first performed bias correction (BC) method for precipitation data using the quantile mapping method. More precisely, the non-parametric quantile mapping method using empirical quantiles was utilised. Bias correction was performed for each model cell independently of the others.

All other variables were corrected using the method of quantile delta mapping (hereinafter QDM). The dependence of the considered variable (e.g. daily average temperature) on precipitation was taken into account. The aim was to maintain the model trends for the variable under consideration and the relationship between precipitation and the variable that follows from meteorological measurements. For the considered variable, the deviations of this variable from the average annual course in the comparison period for the four precipitation classes were corrected using the quantile mapping method. Corrections were performed for each precipitation class and for each model cell independently of the others and for 30-year periods (2011–2040, 2041–2070 and 2071–2100). After corrections of deviations, the absolute values of the considered variable were obtained by adding the average annual course.

As the individual variables vary greatly in absolute terms throughout the year, the average seasonal course of the variable and the deviation from it was separated for each class before eliminating the bias. The average seasonal course was calculated by smoothing the data with the locally estimated scatterplot smoothing function (LOESS). The window of 61 days was taken for the smoothing window, paying attention to the smooth transition at the edges of the year (December, January).

All calculations were first performed for each model of the ensemble and by each model grid point separately. For the selected RCP scenario, the future change for each model and each model grid point was estimated. The change was analysed by comparing the results for one of the three projection periods with the comparison period or by estimating the trend over the entire period (1981–2100).

Regional model data at each model grid point were analysed in two ways:
1. Estimating the changes in the average values of climate variables or their indicators over three thirty-year periods compared to the comparison period.
2. Assessing the long-term trend of extreme values of climate variables or their indicators.

The statistical significance of the change in mean values was assessed by testing the null hypothesis that there was no change. The statistical significance of extreme value trends was assessed by estimating the confidence interval for the trend. Changes were assessed on an annual and on a seasonal basis.

The comparison period was the thirty-year period 1981-2010. Statistical significance was checked by Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney test. The characteristic level (a) for the test was set to 0.1.

The values of changes and statistical significance of the changes for individual model were combined – the Agency estimated the coherence of the model ensemble, which tells whether the models of the ensemble show similar changes. A change of the ensemble mean value was marked as reliable if more than half of the models showed a statistically significant change with the same sign. If approximately the same number of models showed a statistically significant change on either side, the change was marked as unreliable and reported as such in the report.

Long-term trends of the extreme values of climate variables have been assessed using the extreme value theory (Coles, 2001). A linear trend of extreme values was estimated for the entire period. The values of trends and their errors (trend confidence intervals) for an individual model were finally combined into an estimate for the whole model ensemble using the bootstrap method. The Agency got the mean value for the ensemble trend and its estimated error - a confidence interval that is greater than the confidence intervals of individual model trends. The statistical significance of the whole ensemble trend was assessed similarly to the assessment of changes in the thirty-year periods.

The whole process - from data quality control, homogenisation and model data downloading to data processing (bias adjustment, downscaling), data analysing and results visualisation is done by self-developed tools using R, Python and CDS.
Before the adoption of NAS in 2016, expert groundwork for adaptation was prepared.

The Slovenian Environmental Agency examined in detail the past climate variability in Slovenia both in terms of average conditions and in terms of extraordinary phenomena within the framework of the project "Climate variability of Slovenia”. Based on historical trends, the still ongoing project "Climate Change Assessments in Slovenia by the end of the 21st century" was able to develop climate change assessments for the future. In 2018, the first assessment of climate change impacts by the end of the 21st century was concluded and presented to the public.

In 2014, Expert basis for risk and vulnerability assessment in Slovenia were prepared by researchers of the Biotechnical faculty of the University of Ljubljana. This was a first attempt at impact and vulnerability assessment at the reginal level in Slovenia. The results were used in preparation of NAS but were not an official part of the NAS.
Observed climate hazards Acute Chronic
Temperature
  • Wildfire
  • Temperature variability
Wind
  • Storm (including blizzards dust and sandstorms)
Water
  • Snow and ice load
  • Water scarcity
Solid mass
  • Landslide
  • Soil erosion
Key future climate hazards Acute Chronic
Temperature
  • Wildfire
  • Temperature variability
Wind
  • Storm (including blizzards dust and sandstorms)
Water
  • Snow and ice load
  • Sea level rise
Solid mass
  • Landslide
  • Soil erosion
Climate change poses significant pressure on existing environmental, economic and social challenges already present in Slovenia. With regard to environment, climate change poses additional threat to biodiversity, causes more frequent natural disasters due to storms, floods and other weather extremes, as well as it impacts sectors that are most exposed, such as agriculture, forestry and tourism. Among other, warm winters are more common which has an already observed impact on biodiversity such as disturbed hibernation patterns, expansion of thermophilic species, etc. In economic terms, warm winters also mean less days in ski season. The regions that are already suffering due to difficult economic situation were assessed as being more vulnerable to climate change impacts in the Expert basis for risk and vulnerability assessment (2104). There are large disparities between regions in indicators such as growing number of people older than 65 or the level of education in the region, further contributing to their vulnerability.

The National Disaster Risk Assessment, Version 1.0, compared the risks of 12 types of disasters (earthquake, flood, hazards of biological, chemical, environmental or unknown origin to human health, highly contagious animal diseases, nuclear or radiological accident, railway accident, aircraft accident, drought, large wildfire, terrorism, ice storm, accidents involving dangerous substances) which were identified in 2015 on the basis of risk assessments for individual disasters. In 2016, certain risk assessments for individual disasters were amended taking into consideration the impacts of future climate change (Risk Assessment for Floods, Risk Assessment for Drought, Risk Assessment for Large Wildfires, and to a lesser extent, Risk Assessment for the Outbreak of Highly Contagious Animal Diseases and Risk Assessment for the Hazards of Biological, Chemical, Environmental or Unknown Origin to Human Health). The Risk Assessment for Ice Storms was also amended, even though according to current knowledge in this area, future climate change will most likely have no significant negative or additional impact on the occurrence of ice storms. In 2018, three new risk assessments for individual disasters were prepared (Risk Assessment for Cyber Threats, Risk Assessment for Accidents at Sea, Risk Assessment for Diseases and Pests Affecting Forest Trees), whereas the Risk Assessment for Nuclear and Radiological Accidents was amended. The National Disaster Risk Assessment, Version 2.0, thus incorporated national disaster risk matrix representing a joint overview, i.e. an overview of all impacts and likelihoods of all the 15 assessed disasters, that shows that the highest risk in the Republic of Slovenia due to the combination of the impact levels and the likelihood of their occurrence, are floods, the only one at a very high risk level. In terms of their likelihood and frequency of occurrence, large wildfires and cyber risks represent a greater risk than floods. However, their impacts are much lower than those of the disasters with the highest impacts at least with regard to representative risk scenarios. Risk assessments for disasters are constantly being amended.
The workshops with experts carried out in preparation of the Expert basis for risk and vulnerability assessment in Slovenia (2014) demonstrated large differences in experts’ assessment of climate change impacts on different sectors. For example, in forestry sector before 2014 there was no agreement on whether forest fires and sanitary felling are to be considered important. In the following years, after 2014, sanitary felling has proved to have a major impact on the state of forests due to the various natural disturbances. In water sector, changing patterns in water flows and floods were assessed as important, while for health impacts of heat waves and new diseases were deemed important alongside the changing quality of drinking water. In energy, most important impacts were considered impacts on RES, disturbances in energy transmission and higher demand for cooling in summer months. Infrastructure was deemed vulnerable due to already existing pressures on public finances resulting from

Key affected sectors

Impact/key hazard
medium
Agriculture (crop and livestock production) and food production have been affected directly or indirectly by changes in climate conditions (impacts on quantity, quality and cost of production).

Climate and hydrological variability and extreme weather events, especially droughts, floods/heavy precipitation, storm (including hail) hazards, low temperatures with frost and heat waves have significant negative effects on Slovenian agriculture.

A significant advance in spring phenology has been observed in large part of the country but hazards in relation to frost appearance exist especially in fruit-growing areas and in viticulture.

Warmer and drier conditions are responsible for reduced plant productivity and specific pest’s appearance.

Especially after 1990, agricultural droughts occur more frequently and with greater intensity. The drought spatial distribution and typology are also changing. It appears in all seasons and it affects the whole country. In the last twenty years, we have recorded 8 droughts that caused damage of national proportions: 2000, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2012, 2013, and 2017. Droughts are accompanied by heat stress due to more frequent heatwaves.

In the last five years, there was high economical damage recorded in fruit production due to spring frost in the years 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2012, 2016, 2017, and 2019 with different spatial coverage.
Key hazard likelihood
different likelihood of their occurrence and exposure for different key hazards and/or climate scenarios
There are different likelihood of occurrence and exposure for different hazards, taking into account different climate scenarios. For example, temperature conditions for plant growth will change. In accordance with the rise in air temperature, the surface layer of the soil will be heated, both of which will affect the phenological development of plants and the length of the growing season. Spring phenological development of plants will be earlier. In the case of a moderately optimistic RCP4.5 scenario, deciduous forest trees will start the season about two weeks earlier, and in the case of a pessimistic RCP8.5 scenario, even up to about 40 days earlier than in comparative period 1981-2010. The length of the growing season will increase in accordance with the rise in temperature, it will start earlier in spring and end later in autumn. While the frequency of spring frosts is projected to remain at a similar level as in the comparative period.
Vulnerability
mixed situation for different key hazards
Vulnerability for agriculture and forestry sector has been assessed before the adoption of the sectoral strategy (Strategy for climate change adaptation of Slovenian agriculture and forestry, adopted in 2008). There were also a number of research programmes and projects carried out in the sector, that included climate change impacts and vulnerability assessment in their work, such as research on projections of water quantity for irrigation, research developing comprehensive system for managing production and income risks in Slovenian agriculture and fisheries sectors, and on improving soil fertility in changing climate, among other.
Risk Future Impact
different rating of risks for different key hazards and/or under different climate scenarios
Drought risk assessment has been prepared in detail in the scope of civil protection mechanism. The overall risk has been - according to return periods of typical surface water balance deficits - estimated as moderate, i.e. medium. Climate change scenarios according to EURO-CORDEX project will somehow increase frequency of moderate deficits, however (also due to technological measures, such as development of irrigation systems) the risk will remain moderate. The only exception is devastating deficit (with current return period over 200 years) under RCP8.5 scenario, becoming more likely (with return period below 100 years). Therefore, under RCP8.5 scenario, risk of catastrophic drought (with impacts exceeding 1% GDP) will - due to decreased return period - become higher.

Increase of frost risk has not been confirmed by climate change projections study; as reported by many other studies, early onset of vegetation was cancelled by a positive temperature trend. However, the frequency of spring frost has increased in the past decade so influence of climate trends will have to be re-evaluated.
Impact/key hazard
medium
Observed changes of organisms, species, communities and ecosystems are not linearly related to the severity of climate change impacts and are closely related to many other environmental pressures to ecosystem. Knowledge on species and habitats sensitivity towards climate change impacts is scarce. Available studies are limited to a few pilot studies at best on ecosystems (river ecosystems, forests, agricultural land). There is also uncertainty due to the limited knowledge about system behaviour, and concrete statements about likely impacts and possible tipping points are difficult to make.

Most plant species are sensitive to increasing temperatures and summer droughts. For many other species, including fauna, the impact of changes in precipitation and humidity in warmer climates is not well known.

The collected data show that populations are declining, particularly those of the species dependent on the traditional agricultural landscape. The status of forest habitat types is still mostly favourable, although the pressures on the forest environment are also increasing. In the mountain ecosystems, treelines and vegetation zones in the Alps are moving up. This means that plants adapted to certain living conditions will not be able to move any higher. In the inland waters ecosystems due to higher temperatures, certain fish species have moved upstream to higher altitudes. In some areas invasive alien species have completely replaced the native ones and thus changed the structure of ecosystems, particularly wetlands. In coastal and marine ecosystems, climate change, and in particular temperature rise, have resulted in tropicalisation, i.e. the northward spread of species from warmer climates. Some species (brown wrasse (Labrus merula), pelagic stingray (Dasyatis violacea)) have already spread to the Slovenian Adriatic sea.
Key hazard likelihood
different likelihood of their occurrence and exposure for different key hazards and/or climate scenarios
Slovenia lies in a zone where the climate and weather conditions vary considerably, as the influences of the Mediterranean, Alpine and Continental climates mix. Climate change projections for the coming decades indicate that extreme weather events will occur more frequently than in the past. Severe summer droughts have a considerable impact on local biodiversity. Severe storms with hail, strong wind gusts and heavy rain can severely damage vegetation, which can significantly affect the local populations of some species. Warm and green winters, i.e. winters without snow in the lowlands, are becoming more common, which also has an impact on biodiversity (disturbed hibernation patterns, the expansion of thermophilic species, etc.). The consequences of the catastrophic ice storm that affected app. 50% of forests in Slovenia in 2014 caused long-term impacts on entire ecosystems. As much as 58.3% of the surface of Slovenia is covered in forests, composing 70% of Natura 2000 sites. Forest are being impacted by higher temperatures, longer drought periods and extreme weather events that contribute to lower resilience of forests to diseases and pests, make possible faster spreading of pathogens and increase the chances of spreading of invasive or alien species once they enter into forests. Vulnerability of forests to spreading of diseases and pests due to climate change has been assessed as important in the Disaster Risk Assessment for Diseases and pests affecting forest trees (2018).

The article in Journal for Geography (by authors Ivajnšic, D. and Donša, D., 2018, available at https://www.researchgate.ne[…]tura_2000_areas_in_Slovenia) estimated the magnitude of climate change in Natura 200 areas in Slovenia and found that the most exposed areas are the Sub-Mediterranean or Sub-Pannonia regions. However in the second half of the 21st century due to increasing impacts, the risks will be greater.
Vulnerability
medium
Natura 2000 sites cover about 37% of the country’s territory, while more than half of the territory are areas of special interest. The great amount of animal and plant species that are found in Slovenia add to its resilience to climate change impacts, but also provide an element of risk and vulnerability. There is a vulnerability to widespread penetration of invasive alien species that are better adapted to a hotter climate. There are also existing pressures from agriculture, urbanisation and other impacts on biodiversity that further contribute to its vulnerability (e.g. excessive reproduction of particular groups of insects).

Drought is a stress for plants and causes trees to shed leaves. The lowland forests are already in danger of drying out. The warm summers and mild winters enable faster development and reproduction of some species that can considerably affect forest status (e.g. bark beetles). Forests are in these conditions more vulnerable to forest fires. Despite many efforts to preserve important wetland habitats, increasing urbanisation and intensive agriculture are likely to keep putting pressure on wetlands. If the trend persists, the diverse landscape of slow-flowing waters, flooded forests, wet meadows and plains between rivers will continue to disappear.

Treelines and vegetation zones in the Alps are moving up. This means that plants adapted to certain living conditions will not be able to move any higher. Slovenia may lose a great portion of its mountain plants due to climate change, particularly in areas above the treeline, where biodiversity is the greatest.

Climate change will accelerate the loss of coastal and marine ecosystems, which will affect individual species and have a significant impact on ecosystems and their services on which the society depends. Some land-use, planning decisions and unsustainable exploitation of the sea result in the greater vulnerability of ecosystems to climate change and their reduced flexibility.
Risk Future Impact
different rating of risks for different key hazards and/or under different climate scenarios
For example, for the number of hot days when the maximum temperature exceeds 30 ° C climate projections show a gradual increase in the number of such days. In the near future, there will be 5 to 10 more hot days in the lowland part of the country (central, north-eastern and south-western regions) than in the comparative period. A slightly higher estimate (up to 30 days more) applies to most of the country in the period 2041-2070 and, according to the RCP4.5 scenario, also in the period 2071-2100. At the end of the century, according to the RCP8.5 scenario, up to 60 hot days more are projected in the lowlands than in the comparative period. This means increasingly higher risk for wildfires, droughts and unsuitability of climate for some of the plants and species now present in Slovenia.
Impact/key hazard
mixed impacts for different hazards
In some regions, there are observed hazards such as water scarcity in summer months, sea level rise and soil erosion due to winds. There are also observed hazards such as heat waves, wildfires, storms, drought, floods and landslides. Not all hazards have been assessed in line with Decision no. 1313/2013/EU on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism. The National Disaster Risk Assessment, Version 2.0 (2018), incorporated national disaster risk matrix representing a joint overview, i.e. an overview of all impacts and likelihoods of all the 15 assessed disasters. As the highest risk in the Republic of Slovenia due to the combination of the impact levels and the likelihood of their occurrence, were assessed floods, the only one at a very high risk level.
Key hazard likelihood
different likelihood of their occurrence and exposure for different key hazards and/or climate scenarios
Not all key hazards have been assessed in terms of future climate. In 2016, certain risk assessments for individual disasters were amended taking into consideration the impacts of future climate change (Risk Assessment for Floods, Risk Assessment for Drought, Risk Assessment for Large Wildfires, and to a lesser extent, Risk Assessment for the Outbreak of Highly Contagious Animal Diseases and Risk Assessment for the Hazards of Biological, Chemical, Environmental or Unknown Origin to Human Health). There are also ongoing assessment of climate change impact on landslides in some municipalities, preliminary floods risk assessment included climate change projections while climate change impact assessments for drought, heat waves, wildfires and sea level rise are planned in the period 2021-23.
Vulnerability
mixed situation for different key hazards
There has been no vulnerability assessment in this sector, but in line with Decision no. 1313/2013/EU on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism, a National Disaster Risk Management Capability Assessment was made. Among all the disasters, the best rating in terms of managing disaster risks was given to nuclear or radiological accidents (value 3.37 of the highest possible level 4) followed by the epidemics or pandemics of communicative diseases in humans (3.35), drought (3.33) and ice storms and highly contagious animal diseases (3.32). Cyber threats were given the rating of 3.25. With regard to the epidemics and pandemics of communicable diseases in humans, it should be pointed out that the management capability assessment for that risk was developed before the outbreak of COVID-19. The second group comprises the disasters for which the calculated values were between 3.22 and 3.14 (railway accidents, large wildfires, aircraft accidents, terrorism, and accident at sea), followed by forest tree diseases and pests (3.07). The third group of disasters with the lowest ratings are accidents involving dangerous substances (3.00 or 2.89), floods (2.92) and earthquakes (2.91). Two disasters which, based on the assessment of disaster risks, represent the highest risk in Slovenia (floods, earthquakes), were given the lowest rating along all the considered disasters with regard to the risk management capability assessment. It followed as a conclusion that attention should be thus paid above all to disasters such as floods, earthquakes, epidemics and pandemics of communicative diseases in humans, large wildfires and nuclear accidents, and partially also to disasters such as aircraft accidents, ice storms and terrorism (prioritisation according to the disasters).
Risk Future Impact
different rating of risks for different key hazards and/or under different climate scenarios
Only a handful of risk assessments for individual disasters were amended taking into consideration the impacts of future climate change (Risk Assessment for Floods, Risk Assessment for Drought, Risk Assessment for Large Wildfires, and to a lesser extent, Risk Assessment for the Outbreak of Highly Contagious Animal Diseases and Risk Assessment for the Hazards of Biological, Chemical, Environmental or Unknown Origin to Human Health (epidemics or pandemics of communicative diseases in humans)), so the ratings cannot apply to all.
Impact/key hazard
mixed impacts for different hazards
Changing temperature and precipitation patterns as well as heavy precipitation, wildfires, storms and landslides are already impacting forests in Slovenia.

In general, Slovenian forests are well adapted to site characteristics and local climate, affecting tree growth, regeneration and vitality. As a remnant of past practice, increased occurrence of Norway spruce is still observed and where changing temperature and precipitation patterns are increasing drought stress, bark beetle attacks are common. In natural preserved forests, where tree species composition was defined by natural regeneration, assessment can be done on the basis of forestry inventory, recording signs of illness, damages and defoliations, as well as based on the sanitary cut data. For this, forest service notes reason for sanitary cut for each individual tree, if the reason is well known, as for example: wildfire, storm, landslide, insects, fungi, and so on.

As reported in the 2020 National Inventory Report (NIR, available at https://unfccc.int/documents/226320) the total net emissions of CO2 from LULUCF sector were -4,748 Gg CO2 eq in the base year (1986) and 243 Gg CO2 eq in 2018. The maximum value of net removals was in 2007. Since then, the net removals in the LULUCF sector have been decreasing, which was initially related to change in national forest policy (adoption of the National Forest Programme). However, Slovenian forests have been significantly affected by natural disturbances since 2014. The total harvest in damaged forests has increased for around 50% in recent years, mostly due to increase in sanitary cut, which resulted in a substantial decline of net removals not only in forests, but also in the sector. Thus, the net emissions in 2018 of the LULUCF sector have decreased by 105% since the base year.
Key hazard likelihood
different likelihood of their occurrence and exposure for different key hazards and/or climate scenarios
Only large wildfires and forest tree diseases and pests have been assessed in terms of the likelihood and exposure under future climate. It was assessed that climate change will affect forests as well as the forest fire risk. Higher temperatures, longer drought periods in summer, increased evapotranspiration, increased number of natural disasters and greater damage to forests, all weaken trees, and in a broader sense, create pressure on tree species and their environmental niche, causing forest associations shift towards more thermophilic. Current species in changed local climate are now consequently more susceptible to diseases and pests. This means more deadwood and in dry periods and regions represent flammable biomass in forests, which with the increased number of discharges of the atmosphere, when natural ignition can occur, means that in the future we can expect more fires in the natural environment, including more large fires in the natural environment. Nevertheless, the risk assessment did not change the risk likelihood or probability. The fire risk given the then available climate change projections was assessed as such that it will not represent a global threat to the environment in Slovenia in the future and will be limited mainly to southwestern Slovenia and smaller locally conditioned locations.
Vulnerability
medium
There has been no vulnerability assessment in this sector, but in line with Decision no. 1313/2013/EU on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism, a Risk Management Capability Assessment was made for large forest fires risk which showed that the risk management capabilities are developed at key areas, that the risk is generally being managed (level 3,21 of 4).
Risk Future Impact
different rating of risks for different key hazards and/or under different climate scenarios
Only large wildfires have been assessed in terms of the risk in potential future climate sp the rating cannot apply to all risks.

Overview of institutional arrangements and governance at the national level

According to the ReNPVO20-30, sectors are responsible for preparing climate vulnerability assessment for their respective sector. In the area of risk assessment also sectors are responsible for disaster risk assessments for the disasters they find important. For both assessments, there are mechanisms in place for help in preparation and coordination of work (Interdepartemental Working Groups) and the Slovenian Environment Agency offers climate services to interested parties that help in preparation of assessments. Climate services by the Slovenian Environment Agency provide information on the state of climate and anticipated changes of climate that are adapted to the needs of users (sectors, researchers) and provided in a user-friendly form enabling simple further use.
The Interdepartmental Working Group on Climate Change Adaptation, with members from all concerned ministries, agencies and government offices, was officially nominated by the Government in September 2016 and is tasked with the implementation of the National Adaptation Strategy and horizontal and vertical coordination of adaptation policy-making. The Group serves as a main reference point during the process of adaptation policy development, and is led by the Ministry of Environment, if necessary with the help of external experts . However, due to a large number of members, the work on developping climate change adaptation policy and measures was mainly done bilaterally and members of the WG were invited to comment on the documents or to the events with presentation of results of climate projections as discussion with 40 plus members of a WG proved challenging. Implementation of measures is also mainly agreed on bilateral basis and provision of finances for adaptation action secured in the Climate Change Fund. There has been little action so far with relation to monitoring, evaluation and revision of adaptation policy as more attention is devoted to early stages of planning.
As the NAS foresaw, several activities have been implemented to strengthen the use of instruments of environmental impact assessments for mainstreaming climate adaptation in all policies, plans and projects. One day trainings for authors of environmental reports and report verifiers were carried out in organisation of Ministry of the Environment every year from 2016-2020, providing guidelines, examples of good practices and exchange of experience. The Guidelines by the EC – DG Clima (Outline of the Climate Change related requirements and guidance for major projects in the 2014-2020 programming period) were translated to Slovene and presented at trainings. Guidelines for the Inclusion of Climate Change in Strategic Environmental Impact Assessments for National Spatial Plans (NSPs) in the field of state infrastructure (roads, railways) were prepared. An Instruction to the producers of the environmental report for projects was prepared by The Slovenian Environment Agency. Guidelines on the use of climate projections have been prepared for designers of infrastructure when extreme rainfall input data are used to include climate change impacts, adapted to design calculations and their verification. Further preparation of Guidelines for including climate change impacts in assessments in administrative procedures, recommendations and other tools for strengthening the use of instrument of environmental impact assessments, as well as exchanges and upgrades of databases, are ongoing.
In Slovenia, there is close cooperation between relevant government bodies, both informal and formal, in preparation and integration of outcomes into relevant policy documents and planning. For both disaster risk and capabilities assessments and adaptation policy development, there are mechanisms in place for help and coordination of work (Interdepartemental Working Groups) and members of relevant sectors are included as members in both working groups, while the Slovenian Environment Agency offers climate services to interested parties that help in preparation of such assessments and policy making.
All detailed data on climate projections are freely available on open data portal OPSI (https://podatki.gov.si/) as well as at the Weather portal of the Slovenian Environment Agency, also in a user friendly was in Atlas of climate projections. Data on climate related disaster Risk Assessment, Risk Management Capability Assessment and all the data related to damage assessment after natural disasters is freely available at the Administration for civil protection and disaster relief (former) websites (http://www.sos112.si/) and new government websites (https://www.gov.si/[…]/).

Overview of institutional arrangements and governance at the sub-national level (where “sub-national” refers to local and regional)

Climate change adaptation initiatives at the local and/or regional levels are mostly based on one-off participation in various projects (e.g. pilot research, transnational cooperation and LIFE projects). Collaborations on adaptation across authorities form therefore as a part of a research or other project.
In Slovenia, there are several municipalities, gathered in regions, that have already adopted or are in the process of developing Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan (SECAP) in line with the Covenant of Mayors methodology, incorporating also regional vulnerability assessment and measures important for adaptation. In the case of the first Slovenian LIFE project on climate change adaptation, LIFE ViVaCCAdapt, there was a regional analysis in support of adaptation of agriculture in the Vipava Valley. The Strategy for adaptation that followed was adopted by two municipalities in the region, Ajdovšcina municipality which is part of the project and a neighbouring one. However, these climate change adaptation initiatives at the local and/or regional levels are mostly based on one-off participation in various projects.
Adaptation priorities were laid down in the Strategic Framework for Climate Change Adaptation, adopted by the Government in December 2016. The document provides a long term vision, purpose and strategic guidelines for enhancing adaptation-related activities under four chapters that are relevant for all sectors: Mainstreaming, Wider cooperation, Research and development and Education, training, communication and public awareness. In this four priority areas, actions have been defined, as well as the importance of providing funding was put forward in a separate chapter.
In Slovenia, climate change vulnerability has not yet been fully assessed. However, information on challenges, gaps and barriers to adaptation can be gathered from the draft report on implementation of the NAS, the Strategic Framework for Climate Change Adaptation, in the period from 2016 to 2020. The report concluded with an overall assessment that the implementation was only moderately successful.

The Report shows a different level of success in the implementation of individual steps. The most successful were the integration of climate change adaptation into strategic planning, involvement in European and international activities, the provision of climate services and actions with regard to the preparation of an analysis of the situation in the field of education. The implementation of some steps was assessed as only partially successful, e.g. enhanced use of EIA / CPVO instruments, inter-ministerial cooperation, connecting databases and communication activities. Actions that were assessed as mostly unsuccessful were in the field of cooperation with the local and regional level (national contact point was not established) and the private sector and activities to establish regular cooperation between researchers and decision-makers, as the climate portal was not established. A key achievement was a significant increase in funding for adaptation purposes, and the biggest failure was the lack of progress in preparing the indicator for vulnerability assessment. With the adoption of the ReNPVO20-30, these activities have been postponed to the following years.

In particular, it is necessary to continue and upgrade knowledge on the impacts of climate change on individual sectors (as planned in the ReNPVO20-30 through the preparation of vulnerability assessments), and to plan priority measures on this basis. More efforts are needed to provide systematic research, planning and implementation and monitoring of measures, while also strengthening organization for implementation. An online consultation to develop the long term climate strategy has also shown that knowledge of adaptation (and also measures) to climate change among the general public is much weaker than in the area of climate change mitigation.
General objective of the NAS, the Strategic Framework for Climate Change Adaptation, is to reduce Slovenia’s exposure, sensitivity and vulnerability to climate change impacts and increase the climate resilience and adaptive capacity of society. To advance work towards the objective, 4 horizontal guidelines have been provided:

? Climate change impacts are comprehensively incorporated into the development and implementation of all policies, measures and activities at the national and regional levels and at the levels of local communities, economic operators and individuals. It is particularly important to take climate change impacts into account when undertaking development and spatial planning.

? Broader cooperation, integration, and the exchange of experience and examples of good practice.

? The continuous improvement of knowledge about climate change impacts and climate change adaptation methods.

? An appropriate level and quality of education, competence, awareness, information and broader communication about climate change impacts are achieved. The target public is made aware of the impacts of climate change on society.
 

There were a number of steps foreseen under each of the four horizontal guidelines.

Under Mainstreaming, step for effective coordination of the contents and processes of development and spatial planning, including taking account of capabilities for disaster risk management, that resulted in inclusion of climate change considerations in the main development strategy, spatial development strategy, Strategy for sustainable growth of Slovenian tourism and other strategic documents. As a second step in this chapter, strengthened use of environmental impact assessment instruments, there were a number of trainings, check-ups, instructions and directions provided. Under Broader cooperation guideline, steps for ensuring appropriate inter-ministerial cooperation were taken in the form of meetings of the Interdepartmental working group on adaptation twice, later bilateral meetings. Steps for assuring proactive participation in European and international activities were carried out through inclusion in a number of activities, such as projects GoApply, COST and DriDanube. Steps for greater cooperation between the local and regional levels and the private sector were planned, but National contact point was not established. Under the activity named searching for areas of common ground with other policies and actors, there were a number of activities carried out within the wider international community (such as OECD), EU, as well as nationally with allies in the sectors of health, agriculture, tourism and energy. The guideline on Research and knowledge transfer was successful in carrying out the step on providing climate services (producing long-term climate scenarios and regularly updating, upgrading and adapting the climate groundwork). There were a number of new assessments provided as well as efforts to make them available to the wider public, such as Atlas of climate projections. The step on upgrading and linking databases and processes in support of decision-making, there were some actions taken (e-prostor, OPSI), but they were not systematic. In the step foreseeing establishment of a regular cooperation between researchers and decision-makers, there was only one meeting, but no regular exchange and dedicated climate portal was not established. In the field of education and training, awareness raising and communication, steps on the analysis of the situation, the establishment of comprehensive monitoring and evaluation as well as implementation were carried out within the LIFE IP CARE4CLIMATE project. The second step in this guideline on identification, exchange, dissemination and further development of good practices, there were some good practices collected, but not specifically for adaptation. The steps foreseeing planning and conducting communication campaigns and working with the media, saw a number of activities taken place but no specific communication campaign.

Some actions dedicated to specifically adaptation have been carried out with the help of Climate Change Fund.

Selection of actions and (programmes of) measures

Not reported


In Slovenia, there are not many sub-national strategies, policies and plans in place in particular for addressing climate change adaptation. However, there is a great number of strategies and plans that municipalities, as the only level of local government, have adopted to plan their development in a sustainable way, in many cases including climate adaptation measures such as green infrastructure, floods protection measures and other support for increasing resilience to extreme weather events. These plans are mainly carried out through spatial planning, detailed spatial plans and strategic spatial plans. Bigger, city level municipalities have also adopted Sustainable Urban Development Strategies, and some municipalities have gathered into regions and have adopted Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan (SECAP).

There is one local level strategy for climate change adaptation in agriculture, Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for Agriculture in the Vipava Valley for the period 2017-2021 (https://life-vivaccadapt.si/[…]/Deliverable_C1_FINAL_Strategy-1.pdf) that was developed within LIFE project ViVaCCAdapt. Strategy was based on the Regional analysis to support adaptation of agriculture to climate change in the Vipava Valley, also developed within the project. The strategy has reviewed existing documents on adaptation and selected those measures from Common Agricultural Policy, Rural development programme and other policies in water management (River Basin Management Plans for the Danube and Adriatic Sea River Basins) that were deemed priorities on the basis of the analysis and in the process of wider consultations.
Mainstreaming of adaptation is carried out mainly through SEA/IEA instruments that guarantee that strategies, plans and projects have also included consideration of climate change impacts. Many national level strategies have included climate change impacts already in the preparation phase, or through public and interministerial consultation processes. Some sectors, such as agriculture and forestry sectors have their own adaptation strategies and carry out measures which address climate change impacts through both national and European funding.

Slovenia's Development Strategy 2030 (SRS2030), the country's umbrella development document adopted in 2017, explicitly addresses climate change goals. The Strategy for sustainable growth of Slovenian tourism for 2017-2021, also adopted in 2017, included a measure of having a climate change vulnerability assessment for the tourism sector, besides measures on further developing the green scheme and making tourism infrastructure more resilient through providing funds for energy retrofitting and other. In the water management sector, the Water Management Plan for the Danube and Adriatic See Basins for the 2016–2021 period was adopted, which also defines measures that contribute to climate change adaptation. Climate change impacts have been included in the second cycle of the EU Floods Directive (2007/60/EC) assessment of flood hazard in flood risk assessment and management process. Climate services have been provided by the Slovenian Environment Agency to experts so that floods hazard maps have been prepared using climate projections of impacts on precipitation. Since 2006, Slovenia has been the host of the Drought Management Centre for Southeastern Europe – DMCSEE (under the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification – UNCCD and the World Meteorological Organisation – WMO). The groundwork for the National Action Plan for Drought Management in Slovenia was prepared in the framework of DMCEEE, which examined current drought management in Slovenia and put forward specific proposals for its improvement. For biodiversity conservation, The Natura 2000 Management programme for Slovenia for the period 2014-2020 has been adopted, especially for the management of NATURA 2000 sites. It determines conservation goals for habitats and species with the aim to maintain or improve their conservation status and thus also to improve their resilience to climate change. On 29 January 2020, the National Assembly of the Republic of Slovenia adopted the Resolution on the National Program on Strategic Directions for the Development of Slovenian Agriculture and Food "Naša hrana, naravni viri in podeželje po letu 2021". The document defined the basic strategic framework for the operation of agriculture, food and rural areas and is the basis for new strategic planning for the period after 2021. Ministry for agriculture, food and forestry has identified the following specific objectives: reduction of negative impacts on water, soil and air, climate change mitigation and adaptation, biodiversity protection, preservation of the cultural landscape and ensuring higher standards of animal welfare.

Mitigation and adaptation of agriculture to climate change is one of the central challenges it has addressed with solutions such as adaptation of species and varieties of agricultural plants, consideration of modern crop rotation guidelines and implementation of modern technological solutions. This will consequently change the current practices of many farms and also affect market conditions.
 

The energy renovation of buildings, both public and private, had a number of multiple effects in Slovenia, such as: cost reduction, better quality of life and job creation with the revival of the construction sector and the timber industry. The Government of the Republic of Slovenia adopted an Action Plan to increase the competitiveness of the forest-wood chain until 2020, which aimed at creating a market for timber products and services, improving the sustainable management of forests, increasing the amount and processing of timber with new technologies, creating new jobs and increasing the added value per employee in the wood processing industry.

Administration for Civil Protection and Disaster Relief under Ministry of Defense, is the national coordination body for risk assessment processes (providing links with adaptation related policies through Inter-ministerial working group on Disaster Risk and Management Capabilities Assessments) and also responsible for national emergency response plans in co-operation with other ministries. Climate change impacts have been included into relevant disaster risk assessments.

Some legislation also changed, for example the new Spatial Planning Law integrates climate change adaptation in spatial/urban/land use planning processes at all levels. Adaptation is not mainstreamed in insurance policies, however there are incentives for investments in risk prevention in agriculture.
The National Disaster Risk Assessment, adopted by the Government in 2016 and updated in 2018 to include Risk Assessments with integrated climate impacts, provides a comprehensive risk assessment analysis for disasters and identifies that the major disaster risks for the country are related to floods. Water management (and associated risks of flood and drought) together with agriculture and forestry are sectors that have devoted the most attention to climate change adaptation action in the past also due to the high impact of extreme weather events. Main measures in agriculture that are important also for climate change adaptation are carried out through Common agricultural policy funding and Rural development programme. Ministry for agriculture also provides incentives to farmers for investments in risk prevention in agriculture as a means of risk transfer.

All infrastructure projects and government plans have to assess climate change impacts through SEA/IEA procedures. A dedicated process to facilitate stakeholders' involvement forms an integral part in the preparation of environment reports in SEA/IEA processes. Cooperation with external experts takes place, plans on how to involve stakeholders are developed and a number of public events and regular consultations with experts are held. A continuous process for improvement, especially of the coordination between policy-makers and science, is undertaken.

Stakeholders are being engaged as a part of general policy making. There is an obligation to consult with representative organizations of municipalities in all policy making. There are many practices of municipalities engaging with stakeholders particularly vulnerable to climate change impacts, as municipalities in Slovenia have wide ranging responsibilities from civil protection in natural disasters to elderly care. On the local level, adjustments of contingency plans for emergency situations, including the ones caused by climate change (floods, forest fires, heat waves etc.) are being made. Many municipalities also promote local resilience by providing urban gardens, social housing, local spatial planning directed into development of more green and blue areas, elimination of invasive alien species in municipal grounds etc. A good practice example from the sub national level is also municipalities engaging with stakeholders in the process of participatory budgeting.
Many measures in agriculture are important as they are contributing to resilience through promoting self-sufficiency in food. The ministry of agriculture has many actions directed towards promotion of high quality local foods, thus engaging with the private sector especially in food production area. Many municipalities are also assisting farmers in providing services to local public and private actors, public kindergartens and schools, and carrying out improvement of energy efficiency of public buildings (including kindergartens and schools) through public-private partnerships, thus engaging with the private sector on many levels.
Adaptation measures are being carried out in priority sectors and the monitoring of progress takes place as defined in the respective action plans (water management plans, flood risk management plans, in agriculture and forestry sectors). Measuring the effectiveness/efficiency of adaptation progress has been developed with the Vulnerability Indicator, described in the Annex 4 (Process of development and structure of the Vulnerability Indicator) of the NAS, Strategic Framework for Climate Change Adaptation.

A system for the periodic review of adaptation action at sectoral and local levels and the allocation of reporting responsibilities is planned to be developed within the framework of the National Action Plan on Adaptation, planned in 2022 and after sectoral vulnerability assessments. The Plan should also provide for the indicators and type of framework to be used to monitor progress via a set of indicators to assess preparedness.

There are indicators developed within the wider framework of Environment indicators of the Slovenian Environment Agency, specifically on climate change adaptation, available at http://kazalci.arso.gov.si/[…]/climate-change-adaptation.
The implementation of adaptation actions within the Climate change fund has been assessed in two steps – first in their overall contribution to the criteria for inclusion for funding, among which is contribution to climate change adaptation through increasing resilience (other criteria are also the preparedness of the project, wider impacts, etc.), and secondly through the process – have climate change impacts been assessed and included in the implementation or design of the measure. In this way, there are double guarantees that actions have contributed to adaptation objectives of increasing resilience to climate change impacts.
There is no overview in terms of disbursement of funding to increase resilience to climate change in Slovenia. Such an overview would also be impossible to make as measures that contribute to climate resilience are distributed across sectors and layers of government and in many cases are not reported for these purposes, but for example in Rural development programme across the farms. In many cases these include the agricultural practice itself, not only the part that is related to climate change adaptation. The funds disbursed to wider adaptation purposes - irrigation (infrastructure, equipment, sprinkling and pipeline), spraying system against frost, foil for protection against cracking and burning of fruits, hail nets and greenhouses, amounted in the period 2014-2020 to 23.135.154,00 EUR (already disbursed funds until the end of 2020), however the data has to be interpreted with caution as one farm might have received funds for more than one of these measures, and that one measure can also mean that funds for plantations have been counted among the measures.
In Slovenia, there is no earmarking of funds for climate adaptation. There are also practical difficulties in distinguishing to what degree certain measure in for example communication activities is only for adaptation, or possibility of double counting in the case of measures for energy efficiency in buildings, important for both greenhouse gas emissions reductions and improving resilience to weather extremes.

However, funding for cross-cutting climate adaptation actions is available within Climate Change Fund, and allocations to specific climate adaptation research or implementation measures are increasing. There are a number of other funds, from European Cohesion Funds for floods defence measures and disaster risk management measures to EEA and Norway grants mechanism that are contributing to adaptation goals.
No such assessment of spending used to support climate adaptation as the additional investment that makes a project (that would have been realised anyway) climate resilient has been realised in Slovenia. From experience, there is no more than 20% of higher security thresholds needed to include projected climate change impacts and most of the time these are already included within the security parameters of designing guidelines.
Progress towards reducing climate change impacts, vulnerabilities and risks has not yet been assessed in Slovenia.
As adaptive capacity has not yet been assessed in Slovenia, there is also no assessment of progress in this regard available.
Slovenia has set-up a qualitative and quantitative monitoring process for the implementation of the Strategic Framework. The strategic framework outlines a set of indicators that will form the vulnerability indicator. The aim is to monitor climate change by collecting information on a range of variables like exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity variables, key climate change impacts and identified risks and opportunities. Monitoring of the implementation of measures will be selected when adaptation plan and actions are developed.

Qualitative assessment of progress towards meeting adaptation priorities as set in the NAS have been made through assessment of actions preformed under each guideline and corresponding steps in the draft report on implementation of the NAS, the Strategic Framework for Climate Change Adaptation, in the period from 2016 to 2020. Vulnerability indicator has not yet been developed.
Barriers to adaptation have been only assessed implicitly in the NAS and progress towards addressing them reported in the form of the draft Report on implementation of the NAS, the Strategic Framework for Climate Change Adaptation, in the period from 2016 to 2020, report assessing progress towards adaptation goals through carrying out the steps and guidelines for enhancing climate resilience.
The NAP drafting hasn’t yet started, as first vulnerability assessments for sectors and municipalities are still underway. Indicators and a periodic adaptation review system are to be developed in the framework of a NAP.
There is no planned revision of the National Adaptation Strategy.
As subnational adaptation plans, policies, strategies and measures are in the early stages of development, there are no good practices to report besides the ones already reported under the chapter Adaptation strategies, policies, plans and goals.

Good practices and lessons learnt

The Climate Change Fund, replenished by the ETS allowances trading, started in 2019 dedicating more funds also to various adaptation undertakings, combining thus efforts in climate mitigation area (with communication and awareness raising activities through LIFE integrated project CARE4CLIMATE and various NGO supported activities) with specific adaptation measures - protecting biodiversity, promoting resilience planning through funding research into avalanches, vector-borne diseases and building back better after natural disasters. A number of other measures e.g. in energy efficiency, international development aid and scientific research also contribute to climate adaptation goals.
Based on shared transboundary watercourses and mountains, Slovenia participates in 2 international river commissions, three EU regional strategies and the Alpine Convention. There are a number of cross-border and transboundary cooperation projects that deal with specific adaptation needs on the ground.
Slovenia is cooperating with neighbours and other countries of the Western Balkans in the frame of the Sava River Basin Framework Agreement. Within this framework, a regional Flood Warning System for the countries of the Sava River Basin was established with one of its centres in Slovenia. The system represents a modern and innovative tool not only for the prevention of floods, but also for the climate change adaptation in the region.
Since 2006, Slovenian Environment Agency hosts the WMO Drought Management Centre for Southeastern Europe that helps the countries in the region prepare, assess and improve their drought management through increasingly advanced tools. They were developed in the framework of different EU transnational cooperation programmes, such as Danube and Alpine Transnational Region Programme.

Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning

Climate Change Unit
responsible for reporting
Barbara Simonic
National Focal Point

Relevant websites and social media source

[Disclaimer]
The information presented in these pages is based on the reporting according to 'Regulation (EU) 2018/1999 on the Governance of the Energy Union and Climate Action' and updates by the EEA member countries. However, for those pages where the information is last updated before 01/01/2021, the information presented is based on the reporting according to 'Regulation (EU) No 525/2013 on a mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions and for reporting other information relevant to climate change' and updates by the EEA member countries.'