Climate change is increasing the frequency, intensity and magnitude of disasters, leading to a higher number of casualties, land degradation as well as property and economic losses. Nature can provide cost-effective, no-regret solutions, which help increase ecosystem and community resilience beyond their capacity to absorb and recover from a single disaster, such as a flood or drought. The Western Balkan economies are among the most vulnerable with respect to climate change impacts affecting numerous sectors and domains.
Applying Nature-based solutions in the Western Balkans
Nature-based solutions are defined as actions to protect, sustainably manage, and restore natural and modified ecosystems that address societal challenges effectively and adaptively, simultaneously providing human well-being and biodiversity benefits. Their use in response to societal challenges remains underexplored in the Western Balkans and the benefits compared to conventional engineered solutions undervalued. The application of approaches that integrate ecosystems and nature more broadly into climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction measures are still insufficient and fragmented. Beyond the positive impact they would have on societies and improved management of disaster risks, Nature-based solutions would benefit ecosystem functions and biodiversity as well as support climate change mitigation and adaptation.
With the financial support of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), ADAPT aims to increase ecosystem and community resilience to climate change and environmental degradation by applying Nature-based solutions for disaster risk reduction. This regional umbrella initiative works with participating economies, regional and local partners across the Western Balkans to:
- Increase knowledge and awareness of nature-based disaster risk reduction solutions among decision makers, natural resource managers and local communities;
- Integrate Nature-based solutions and equitable climate-smart planning into adaptation and disaster reduction policy; and
- Implement Nature-based solutions for disaster risk reduction and their scale-up.
- Full project title: ADAPT: Nature-based solutions for resilient communities in the Western Balkans
- Project duration: 36 months
- The official start of the project: 1 November 2019
- Total budget: €2.480.202,00