Climate change is happening. Our water, food, nature and weather are all affected and it’s vital to learn how to adapt to these changes, to maintain our security and quality of life. Alongside IEEP’s work to support policies and actions to reduce the severity of future changes to the climate (mitigation), we contribute to the development of effective policy addressing the challenges of adaptation to climate change.

Building resilience to climate induced changes is an important focus of the EU policy on adaptation to climate change, following the release of a Commission White Paper on the subject in April 2009.

The availability of water for drinking, for growing our food and for producing our energy; the suitability of land for producing our food and building our houses; and the health of the ecosystems we rely on (such as the forests which filter our air and the wetlands which protect us from floods) are all affected. This is why adapting to climate change is something that all sectors and policy areas must address: the issue must be ‘mainstreamed’ in policy-making.

Counting the cost of adaptation
We undertake in work for DG CLIMA to support the capacity of governments to account for adaptation related expenditure, to help to strengthen the knowledge base on adaptation which the EU White Paper recognised as weak and fragmented. This work examines existing methodologies for classifying and costing adaptation measures with a view to establishing categories to track expenditure on adaptation, and highlighting promising methodologies for determining the costs of adaptation measures.

 

Climate-proofing the EU Budget
The challenging issue of how to reflect the political priority of climate change in the EU Budget also includes adaptation. IEEP is working to understand how ‘climate proofing’ can be operationalised in the context of the EU budget.

Biodiversity
IEEP’s biodiversity work includes three linked investigations in the UK to inform policy making and land management decisions concerning climate change and protected sites, as well as considerations towards managing adaptation and mitigation needs.

Developing countries
Under our contract to provide information and briefings to the European Parliament, we have provided advice on how best to engage developing countries in the international climate change negotiations. This has included analysis of the conflicting pressures facing developing countries and analysis of adaptation needs versus ongoing support mechanisms.