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Climate change adaptation practice across the EU (2013)


Adaptation is a challenging undertaking that is only just beginning across the EU. This publication aims to provide policy makers, project developers and other actors with illustrative examples of adaptation activities at national, regional and local levels. The examples and case studies presented here stem from research on climate change adaptation at the regional level in all the EU Member States. The research results are contained in the Study of Adaptation Activities at Regional Level in the EU, prepared for the European Commission DG Climate Action in 2013. As part of this research, a long list of practice examples was identified, from across the EU. These examples cover a range of adaptation practices: efforts to better understand climate change impacts; planning for adaptation at all levels; and the implementation of concrete adaptation solutions. These and other examples drawn from literature and the growing database of cases on the European Climate Adaptation Platform (Climate-ADAPT) have been used to demonstrate what is being done about climate change in key policy sectors; ten examples have been selected as the subject of the longer case studies.

This publication is presented in two parts. The first part contains a short overview of climate change impacts on key policy sectors: Agriculture and forestry; Biodiversity; Coastal areas; Disaster risk reduction; Health; Infrastructure and Water management. Impacts are shown by sector to provide a better understanding of what climate change means for our livelihood, and also for policy-making. Possible adaptation responses for the main impacts are presented by exemplifying existing good practice.

The second part contains ten case studies which demonstrate how adaptation to climate change is researched, planned and delivered across the EU. The ten case studies are quite diverse in content. They address different levels of governance – from the national to the local as well as trans-boundary issues both within and across Member States. They cover a range of geographic and climatic areas in the EU. They address different vulnerable sectors, such as agriculture, water management, tourism, and coastal areas.

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