Adaptation and tools for local authorities

WRITTEN BY Local Partnerships
POSTED ON 2nd July 2021

The Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) third independent assessment on UK Climate Risk was published on 16 June 2021 and it makes alarming reading. The headline finding is that the UK is less well prepared for climate change than it was when the last independent report was published in 2017.

Of particular concern were risks where the CCC felt that little or no progress was being made, such as increasing the resilience of the electricity supply industry and the significant risks to nature and soils. We often think about adaptation in terms of flooding and heatwaves, but the risk assessment provides a much more studied and nuanced understanding of the complexity and interlocking nature of many of the risks.

The UK temperature rises by around 0.3⁰C every decade and globally emissions continue to rise. Sea levels have risen 5cm since 1990 and more dramatic rises are likely in the latter half of the century. Adaptation does not feature in many action plans that have emerged following climate emergency declarations by councils. Adaptation is needed just as much as net-zero but with budgets constrained, adaptation actions are often either not well understood or are left for another day.

Local Partnerships has been working with the UK Climate Impact Programme (UKCIP), based at the University of Oxford, to provide free-to-use tools to enable local authorities to assess their own risks and state of preparedness. In doing this, it is important that key concepts and language are well understood. We will be delivering adaptation literacy training from September onwards to authorities who seek to raise the level of understanding in their organisation. As with carbon literacy, it is clear that increased understanding leads to a better quality of decision-making, and is key to long-term success.

We are looking for a pilot local authority to work with us to test the updated tools and adaptation literacy. To express interest, please contact Emma Bull emma.bull@localpartnerships.gov.uk

Is it easy being green? Read more from @HuwRussell πŸ‘‡ https://t.co/mruyAoQH6m

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