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Session 2: Explore what these potential futures mean for climate adaptation and disaster reduction

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PLACARD foresight workshop, facing the future of Europe’s climate – EU governance and climate risks at a crossroads

11–12 December 2018, European Commission, Brussels

The second PLACARD Foresight workshop showcased the potential of foresight methods in increasing climate resilience across Europe. Within the workshop we explored how Juncker’s “5 futures of Europe” can be used for assessing climate and DRR risks in Europe, and for designing and characterising effective response strategies, for three cases (heat and drought, fluvial flooding, coastal impacts).

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Session 2: Explore what these potential futures mean for climate adaptation and disaster reduction

  1. 1. SESSION 2 1 Break-out groups Explore what these potential futures mean for climate adaptation and disaster reduction 3 cases v CASE 1 – 2030: Heat, hardship and horrible harvests v CASE 2 – 2030: Paris, Hamburg and Prague are mopping up – but more floods to come v CASE 3 – 2030: Storm surges along the North-Western European coast cause dead and damage
  2. 2. 2 Illustration by Bertram de Rooij 5 Futures of Europe - 3 Cases - Implications for CCA and DRR Case 1 Heat and drought Case 2 River flooding Case 3 Coastal impacts
  3. 3. • “There is an enormous gap between what we need to do and what we’re actually doing to prevent dangerous levels of climate change. And that gap is getting bigger.” -> The Paris Agreement is not effectively implemented, taking the world on a 3-5oC pathway • But anyway, projected impacts really start to diverge after 2050. Until 2050 socio-economic factors dominate vulnerability and Juncker’s EU futures can be expected to strongly influence sensitivity and adaptive capacity. • And observations tell us: the climate is changing already now. The observed increase in frequency and intensity of extreme weather continues in our cases. Rationale for the exercise U.N. Gap Report November 2018
  4. 4. Case 1 Heat and drought Case 1: Heat and Drought Heat, hardship and horrible harvests • If you think 2018 was bad, 2030 is worse • A scorching summer without rain in large parts of Europe. • Temperatures soar to 45oC in the Mediterranean and even above 35oC at the Arctic Circle. • Impacts include severe forest fires from the Mediterranean up to the Baltic and Scandinavia, harvest failures, heat stress victims. • Experts estimate that more than half of the EU population is affected. • Vulnerability to this extreme weather has been determined by the path the EU has taken. • There is a loud outcry for EU solidarity. But can the EU provide the required support?
  5. 5. Case 2: Floods Paris, Hamburg and Prague are mopping up – but more floods to come • Countries across Europe have been hit by severe floods and flash floods this week. • Heavy rainfall combined with spring snow-melt caused the Seine, Danube, Elbe and Rhine and their tributaries to step outside their banks. • Hundreds of people have been killed, more are missing, many homes have become inhabitable. • More rain predicted: Floods exceed not only the local but also the national response capabilities Case 2 River flooding • Financial aid is urgently needed to help cover the costs of the restoration of essential infrastructure, but also emergency measures, clean-up operations and securing flood defenses. • How did the EU path taken affect vulnerability? Can the EU respond to requests from EU member states for financial and operational assistance in an effective and timely manner?
  6. 6. Case 3: Coastal impacts Storm surges along the European coasts cause dead and damage • Storm surges and heavy rainfall as a result of hurricane Ingrid have caused dozens of victims and extreme damage along the coasts of Portugal, France, Ireland, UK. • Schools and hospitals are closed, many public transport and aviation services have ceased operations and the army and other disaster response services are shoring-up flood defenses. • Damage estimates of this week’s events amount to tens of billions of Euros. Many have died, more are missing. • Along many coasts, the floods exceed not only the local but also the national response capabilities. Case 3 Coastal impacts • Financial aid is urgently needed to help cover the costs of the restoration of essential infrastructure, but also emergency measures, clean-up operations and securing flood defenses. • How did the EU path taken affect vulnerability? Can the EU respond to requests from EU member states and post-Brexit UK for financial and operational assistance in effectively and timely?
  7. 7. SESSION 2 – BREAK-OUT GROUPS 7 For 3 (out of 5) scenarios v Scenario 1: Carrying On - “The EU27 focuses on delivering its positive reform agenda” v Scenario 2: Nothing but the Single Market - “The EU27 is gradually re-centred on the single market” v Scenario 3: Those Who Want More Do More - “The EU27 allows willing MS to do more together in specific areas” v Scenario 4: Doing Less More Efficiently - “The EU27 focuses on delivering more and faster in selected policy areas, while doing less elsewhere” v Scenario 5: Doing Much More Together - “MS decide to do much more together across all policy areas” Address 2 questions: • What are downsides /upsides of the scenarios for CCA and DRR in general? • What are the challenges for vulnerability (risks) and resilience (responses) for your case?
  8. 8. SESSION 2 – BREAK-OUT GROUPS 8 Each team to explore what these potential futures mean for climate adaptation and disaster reduction Step 1: Discuss the scenarios and how they affect CCA and DRR policies in general (upsides and downsides) Step 2: For your case and for each scenario focus on • In 2030, how vulnerable are people, economic assets and ecology (level of prevention)? • In 2030, how resilient are EU emergency response services (level of preparedness)? NB Next session 3: which specific actions are to be taken by whom?

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