Insurance is of paramount importance when needing to adapt to the current and future risks of climate change and its consequences (often consisting in natural catastrophes and extreme hydrometeorological phenomena), which directly affect the activity of the insurance sector. The latter is forced to take measures to assess the change in the covered risks and seek solutions that allow reducing damage and increasing the resilience of society, even when the latter also plays a fundamental role in their mitigation.
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Historically, the Regge was a free-flowing shallow lowland river which meandered through a landscape containing marshes, wet meadows and sandy levees. To facilitate shipping, from 1848 onwards the river was straightened by cutting off meanders, and the river channel was deepened and widened. Dams were built to better regulate the river flow, and the floodplain was embanked to protect the adjacent land from flooding. In 1935, the river was almost completely canalised, reducing its length from roughly 70 km to 50 km.
Hesketh Out Marsh is one of the biggest managed realignment projects in the UK and is one of the country’s most important estuary habitats for birdlife. The original saltmarsh was isolated from the estuary in 1980 by the creation of an outer wall, and was used for growing crops. With the sea level rising, it was necessary to create stronger sea defences. By a process known as “managed realignment”, seawater has been let back in to flood the land, re-creating saltmarsh and providing space for nature.
The former industrial area ?Luciline? in Rouen, along the Seine river, has been profoundly re-designed into an ecodistrict covering 9 hectares in total and including both climate change adaptation and mitigation solutions. Sustainable living is the core principle of the neighbourhood re-design. Sustainability solutions are implemented in fields playing an important role in climate change adaptation and mitigation, such as energy, water, biodiversity, transport and planning.
The Albert canal in the eastern part of Flanders connects the industrial zones around Liege with the harbour of Antwerp. Ships can continue their way at both ends of the canal: via the river Scheldt to the Netherlands and via the river Meuse to France. In the future, the Meuse basin, from which the Albert canal receives its water, is projected to experience more and longer periods of low river discharge, as a consequence of climate change. Thus, less water is expected to be available for sluicing ships. This would limit inland navigation.
Mosquito Alert is a cooperative, non-profit citizen science project coordinated by different Public Research Centers, focusing on the development of predictive models and methods that combine citizen data (big data) with data from authoritative sources (Public monitoring or control Entities, Universities, ...). These models thus become key public health management tools for assessing and controlling the presence of species of mosquitoes that carry arboviruses (arthropod-borne viruses), causing global diseases such as zika, dengue and chikungunya, that require dynamic global solutions.
The objective of the Pteridum project was to analyze the economic viability of controlling common fern populations (Pteridium aquilinum) in a circular economy system adapted to climate change in the Cantabrian Mountains, and reducing forest fires caused or favored by their presence by controlling their expansion in an environmentally respectful way.
This case describes the steps taken towards achieving more balanced management of Cork Harbour, through the establishment of a strategic alliance (couplet) between the local authority and multidisciplinary academic experts. This innovative partnership resulted in the adoption of an Integrated Management Strategy. A stakeholder group – Harbour Management Focus Group (HMFG) – comprising statutory and non-statutory organisations was established to implement the management strategy.
Losses and damages related to urban flooding and storms are likely to increase due to climate change. The insurance industry can potentially play a key role in climate change adaptation by contributing to the understanding of risks associated with climate change. By sharing data on the location of insurance claims associated with extreme rainfall or storms, the insurance industry can enable better-informed adaptation planning and risk management.
The city of Antwerp, in order to better understand the problem of heat stress, commissioned the research organization VITO to map the current and future temperatures and thermal comfort in the city. The research results indicate that the urban heat island of Antwerp exacerbates the impact of climate change on the urban population as the amount of heatwave days in the city raises twice as fast as in the rural surroundings. To tackle the problem of heat stress in the city, adaptation measures at three different scales (city-wide, local and the individual citizen) are put forth.