Climate Change Adaptation
Taking current developments and the results of climate research into account, it is undeniable that global warming and climate change are actually happening. Extreme weather events like heavy rainfall, hail, violent storms and heat-waves are becoming more frequent, while sea levels have started rising. Urban systems are highly vulnerable to these threats.
There are considerable differences in the character and severity of the consequences with which countries, regions and geographical zones will have to cope. Adaptation and resilience management is therefore required both on a regional and local scale – moving towards resilient communities.
Supporting communities in making tangible changes
ICLEI is committed to supporting cities, towns and urban regions in their efforts to develop adaptation strategies and action plans, and to guide them through a systematic process of implementation and management. Acknowledging the complexity and cross-cutting nature of the challenges, we emphasise the need to make a strategy for adaptation and resilience an integral part of any statutory planning process.
ICLEI is involved in creating and advancing tools that support local governments in assessing their vulnerability and developing their adaptation and resilience strategies. ICLEI considers itself as an interface between various levels of government - from the European Union to the local level and vice versa, as well as between research, policy and practice.
ICLEI is involved in the following projects related to climate change adaptation:
- EU Cities Adapt, a new project being carried out for DG CLIMA Action which will provide capacity building and assistance for European cities in developing and implementing an adaptation strategy.
- CHAMP, a project which aims to train and support local and sub-regional authorities in implementing an integrated management system for climate change mitigation and adaptation, and to promote the method and the model Europe-wide.
- AsianCitiesAdapt brings together science and policy in order to identify the impacts of climate change and to develop concrete local adaptation strategies in four Indian cities as well as four cities in the Philippines.
ICLEI can recommend a number of tools which are now available:
- The Making Cities Resilient: My City is Getting Ready (2012) is developed in the framework of the UN World Disaster Reduction Campaign. ICLEI was involved in the development of the tool and collaborated on that with UNISDR.
- The Climate Navigator from Klimalotse (2010). This German instrument provided on the adaptation portal of the German Federal Environmental Agency adopts and updates the UKCIP Adaptation Wizard.
- The ICLEI Oceania Toolkit and Australian Department for Climate change: Local Government Climate Change Adaptation Toolkit outlines an adaptive management process and provides a set of tools and exercises from the examination of climate change scenarios.
- The ICLEI US office's Adaptation Guidebook - Preparing for Climate Change: A Guidebook for Local, Regional and State Governments, is a framework that communities can use to prepare for and adapt to regional climate changes. The guidebook specifies the practical steps and strategies that can put into place now to build community resilience into the future.
- The ICLEI Canada office has released Changing Climate, Changing Communites: Guide and Workbook for Municipal Climate Adaptation. The Guide and Workbook for municipal governments provides a framework that they can follow to plan for climate change.
- The Local Climate Impact Profile (LCLIP) was developed by the UK Climate Impacts Partnership (UKCIP). An LCLIP is a non-scientific process that can raise awareness of the service areas at risk from extreme weather impacts. Its strength is raising awareness.
- The UKCIP Adaptation Wizard is an online tool to help local governments to adapt to climate change. It applies a 5-step process to assess vulnerability to current climate and future climate change, identify options to address key climate risks and to develop a climate change adaptation strategy.
- Stadtklimalotse [In German] is an online decision support system provided by the German Bundesinstitut für Bau-, Stadt- und Raumforschung (BBSR) to support the development of climate adaptation measures in city development. More information