European Commission Launches Urban Adaptation Project

17 April 2012: The European Commission Directorate General (DG) Climate Action has launched a project to help European cities adapt to climate change. The project, with is placed with a consortium led by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability and others, will prepare cities to address the challenges posed by climate change through capacity building, exchange of knowledge and best practices, and the development of tools and guidance.

The project will begin with 21 cities and will include an assessment synthesizing the current state of climate impacts and vulnerabilities, and capacity to respond. This assessment will contribute to the urban dimension of the EU strategy on adaptation to climate change that the Commission is currently developing to be adopted in 2013. A Climate-Adapt website will be launched by the European Environment Agency (EEA) and the Commission to facilitate information exchange and the tools used in the project.

The first phase of the project will generate an overview of the “state-of-play” of adaptation to climate change in urban areas of Europe. To participate, local governments can fill out a questionnaire on climate change adaptation. From a long-term perspective, the aim of the project is to mainstream climate adaptation in European cities by raising awareness on the importance of preparing for climate change, facilitate exchange of knowledge and good practices, and develop tools and guidance for cities to adapt.

Three stakeholder dialogues will be held this summer to engage participants on urban adaptation, the first of which will take place in Aalborg, Denmark, at the beginning of June. [Adaptation Strategies for European Cities Project Website] [Official Project Launch Letter by DG Climate Action] [The Questionnaire]