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Tool-supported policy-development for regional adaptation

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New tool to assess regional climate adaptation

Our climate is changing. Within the century, European countries can expect altered precipitation patterns and more extreme weather events to affect trade, infrastructure and communications.

Climate Change and Environment

Adaptation to climate change has two distinct characters: the slower trends in climate variables such as sea water temperature and extreme weather phenomena. The fundamental drivers for regional adaptation are regional climate scenarios, while the resilience of critical infrastructures such as energy and transport are crucial for society. Without the proper functioning of infrastructure, many service sectors will be adversely affected. An EU-funded project has investigated how different sectors from different areas of Europe will meet the risks posed by climate change. The aim of the TOPDAD (Tool-supported policy-development for regional adaptation) project was to develop a next-generation tool set for assessing the full costs of climate change impacts under different adoption strategies and measures. Since cost modelling varies between sectors, researchers focused on case studies from the three key sectors of energy, transport and tourism. The cost indicators produced by the assessment tools where used as input information in two demonstrations on adaptation decision support where robustness of adaptation strategies in two cases where assessed and visualised. The decision support method introduced is called Strategy Robustness Visualization Method (SRVM), and is a hybrid between classical Multi-attribute Decision Analysis (MCDA) and Robust Decision-Making (RDM). The Interactive Tool provided a unique way of integrating sector- and macro-level cost impact tools, resulting in decision support and interactive visual information management. This gave target groups and other end-users a platform for learning and using contemporary cost assessment and decision support tools according to the 'one stop shop' principle. TOPDAD provided policy briefs to decision-makers concerned with adaptation issues in key sectors. It also developed an exploitation plan that packages the next-generation tool set into specific services that can be accessed for follow-up research and by end users. A reliably functioning infrastructure is vital for adapting to the impacts of climate change. The state-of-the-art socioeconomic tools developed by TOPDAD will therefore be used to support regional adaptation decision making, enabling business and regional government to adapt to the short- and long-term changes in climate.


Extreme weather events, climate change, TOPDAD, assessment, decision support, strategy robustness visualization method, interactive tools

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