A Green Deal for Europe
The European Green Deal (announced in December 2019) presents the Commission's plan for a transition to sustainability. It includes making the EU climate neutral by 2050; protecting human, animal and plant life by reducing pollution; helping businesses become world leaders in clean products and technologies; and helping to ensure a just and inclusive transition.
The European Commission published in 2021 the new Climate Change Adaptation Strategy, the adoption of which was part of the measures initially envisaged in the European Green Deal to increase the EU's climate ambition for 2030 and 2050. This strategy seeks to prepare the EU-27 for the inevitable effects of climate change and to provide a response to the growing vulnerability to a crisis that we are already experiencing.
Building on the previous European Climate Change Adaptation Strategy (2013), the aim of the new strategy is to move from understanding risks to developing solutions and from planning to implementing measures to move towards a climate-neutral, climate-adapted and climate-resilient Europe by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement and the EU Climate Law.
The strategy seeks to promote a smarter, faster and above all more systemic adaptive capacity:
- Smart. Because we need to know the risks to plan better. We need reliable data as a basis for decision-making and indicators that show us that we are on the right track.
- Fast. Because we need to intensify our collaboration with all sectors: insurance, infrastructures, agriculture...
- And systemic. Because we need to act on the territory with tailor-made planned actions, emphasizing nature-based solutions.
The strategy also plans to strengthen certain mechanisms such as the monitoring and assessment of impacts and risks, information on adaptation action by Member States and the use of shared indicators to recognize the evolution of the challenges posed by climate change.
Among the proposals developed, the update of the European Climate Adaptation Platform (Climate-ADAPT) stands out. It also envisages its extension with the creation of a European Observatory on Health and Climate Change with the aim of promoting the monitoring, analysis and prevention of the impacts of climate change in this field.
First European Climate Change Adaptation Strategy (2013)
The European Adaptation Strategy, adopted in 2013, sought to increase the resilience of the EU territory by improving the preparedness and response capacity of all levels of administration to respond to the effects of climate change.
The Strategy was adopted with the desire to achieve, through eight concrete actions, the following three objectives:
- To encourage action by member states to adopt comprehensive adaptation strategies, and to encourage funding to help them build their adaptive capacity and take action. One of the actions has been to support adaptation in cities through the Covenant of Mayors initiative, the world's largest movement of cities for local climate and energy action.
- Promoting actions to reduce the impact of climate change by taking measures to further promote adaptation in key vulnerable sectors such as agriculture, fisheries and cohesion policy, ensuring that European infrastructure is more resilient and promoting the use of insurance against natural and man-made disasters.
- Improving decision making by addressing knowledge gaps in adaptation and the development of the European Climate Adaptation Platform (Climate-ADAPT), a freely accessible tool for users to access and share adaptation data and information.
The Commission published the evaluation of the Strategy in November 2018. The evaluation report presents lessons learned and reflections on improvements for future action, accompanied by a working document presenting the evaluation in detail.
According to the analysis, the strategy has met its objectives, with progress being recorded in each of the eight actions defined. However, it points out that Europe continues to be vulnerable to the effects of climate change within and beyond its borders and suggests areas where further work is needed to prepare vulnerable regions and sectors.
Through this link it is possible to access information on the progress of the European Adaptation Strategy.
The European Climate Adaptation Platform Climate-ADAPT is a partnership between the European Commission, EC Directorate-General for Climate Action (DG CLIMA), and the European Environment Agency (EEA). Climate-ADAPT is maintained by the EEA with the support of the European Topic Centre on Climate Change Adaptation and LULUCF (ETC CA).
The overall design and maintenance system of Climate-ADAPT were set up and further developed to support the five main objectives of the platform and to address needs of the target audience.
- Providing trusted data and information. The European Climate Adaptation Platform (Climate- ADAPT) provides reliable, accessible, up-to-date and high-quality knowledge on climate change hazards, vulnerability and adaptation.
- Promoting solutions for action. Climate-ADAPT provides actionable knowledge to enable better informed adaptation planning, policies and practice.
- Empowering people for action at multiple levels. Climate-ADAPT supports more coherent and effective adaptation policies at all governance levels and in all policy sectors in Europe.
- Driving regional and community resilience. Climate‑ADAPT provides direct knowledge support to at least 150 European regions and communities under the EU mission on adaptation to climate change to become climate resilient by 2030.
- Supporting international adaptation action and exchanges. Climate-ADAPT helps to increase climate resilience globally and supports cooperation and exchanges with third countries on climate adaptation at all levels.
Climate-ADAPT aims to support Europe in adapting to climate change helping users to access and share data and information on:
- Expected climate change in Europe
- Current and future vulnerability of regions and sectors
- EU, national and transnational adaptation strategies and actions
- Adaptation case studies and potential adaptation options
- Tools that support adaptation planning
Climate-ADAPT organizes information under the following main entry points:
- EU Policy: EU Adaptation Policy, Adaptation in EU Policy Sectors (Agriculture, Biodiversity, Coastal areas, Forestry, Water management, Marine and fisheries, Disaster Risk Reduction, Buildings, Energy, Transport, Health, Urban), EU Regional Policy, Key EU Actions (Just resilience, Nature-based Solutions)
- Countries, Transnational regions, Cities
- Knowledge: Topics, Data and indicators, Research and innovation projects, Tools, Practice,
- European Climate and Health Observatory
- Database: the platform includes a database that contains quality checked information that can be easily searched.