How does adaptation to climate change take place

Adaptation to Climate Change

The climate is changing worldwide. And with it, people's living conditions are changing - also in Germany. Experts expect far-reaching consequences for the environment, economy and society if it is not possible to at least keep global climate change in check. Even if the ambitious EU target of limiting the rise in the global average temperature to less than two degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial level is achieved, there will be consequences of climate change to which we will have to adapt. A modern climate policy is therefore based on two pillars: avoiding greenhouse gases and adapting to the consequences of climate change, which can no longer be avoided today!

The German adaptation strategy

On December 17, 2008, the Federal Cabinet adopted the German Strategy for Adaptation to Climate Change. This creates a framework for adaptation to the consequences of climate change in Germany. It primarily represents the contribution of the federal government and in this way offers orientation for other actors. The strategy lays the foundation for a medium-term process in which the risks of climate change are gradually assessed with the federal states and other social groups, the possible need for action is identified, the corresponding goals are defined and possible adaptation measures are developed and implemented. In addition to the current state of knowledge about the expected climate changes (worldwide and for Germany) and the associated possible effects, possible climate impacts and options for action are outlined for 15 fields of action and selected regions. Furthermore, the international context and the German contribution to adaptation in other parts of the world are outlined and the next steps for further developing the German adaptation strategy are described.

The aim of the strategy is to create a nationwide framework for action to prevent risks to the population, natural habitats and the economy. This framework is intended, in particular, to make it easier for the different levels of action at the federal, state and local levels as well as for the individual affected citizens to identify those affected and the need for adaptation, and to plan and implement action measures. For example, by including adaptation aspects in planning at an early stage, climate costs that become effective later can be avoided.

Links to the adaptation strategy

Current studies published

In cooperation with the Federal Environment Agency and other research institutions, the Federal Environment Ministry has presented three studies on the health requirements for adapting to climate change. They deal with the increase in heat-related deaths; the spread of exotic mosquitoes, which can transmit various pathogens that have not yet occurred in Germany, and the investigation of the effectiveness of existing information services on UV radiation, heat warning systems, pollen forecast and ozone forecast.