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May 12th, 2015
Sharing Knowledge on Climate Change Adaptation

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May 12, 2015—For all stakeholders – e.g. policymakers, cities, businesses – relevant and timely information is essential for developing and implementing strategies and measures to adapt to climate change. A new report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) provides an overview of existing information platforms across European countries.

According to the EEA’s new technical report ‘Overview of climate change adaptation platforms in Europe‘, adaptation platforms in European countries mostly include information on policy action at transnational, national and subnational levels, scientific research output, guidance, decision-support tools, experiences from practice and implemented adaptation measures.

Speaking at the second European Climate Change Adaptation Conference (ECCA), EEA Executive Director Hans Bruyninckx said, ‘Effective adaptation to climate change requires close cooperation between various stakeholders. Cities and businesses are implementing innovative solutions to adapt to climate change while also enhancing quality of life and protecting ecosystems’. Bruyninckx added, ‘There is already a wealth of knowledge and experience available that should be shared, which can help all stakeholders to connect, be inspired and learn from each other. I believe new research programmes in the EU can further facilitate the co-creation of the knowledge base needed.’

In recent years, many European countries have established information platforms on climate change adaptation. Currently, there are 14 national adaptation platforms across EEA member countries (Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom) and two transnational platforms (the Alpine region and the Pyrenees). These are complemented by Climate-ADAPT– the European Climate Change Adaptation platform managed and maintained by the EEA in collaboration with the European Commission. In addition to country and European information, Climate-ADAPT also hosts a section on the Baltic Sea region. Of the 14 national adaptation platforms, seven are directly linked to the implementation of a national adaptation strategy or action plan.

The EEA report also analyses links between adaptation platforms and climate services and disaster risk reduction platforms. Adaptation measures cover in general long-term and gradual impacts of climate change (e.g. sea level rise) as well as disasters linked to extreme weather events intensified by climate change (e.g. flooding). A closer collaboration between climate adaptation and disaster risk reduction platforms can boost the use of available knowledge and contribute to reduce vulnerability.

In addition to presenting its new report and other findings on climate change, the EEA is organising two workshops on monitoring and evaluation of policies and on adaptation platforms, and participating in various sessions at the http://www.eea.europa.eu/link_icon.gif) 0px 1px no-repeat transparent;”>ECCA conference.

EEA and climate change adaptation

The EEA supports climate change adaptation through a series of assessments and by presenting its findings to various audiences including policy makers and the research community. In the last four years the EEA published assessment reports on the Alps; natural hazards; urban climate change adaptation; water resources and vulnerability; climate change impacts and vulnerability; initial adaptation actions; coasts; and national adaptation policies.

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