What could the EU do?

The EU has a great potential in pushing forward the integrated mitigation and adaptation approach through awareness raising, integrating climate issues in their existing and new policy initiatives and in supporting future research and concrete projects in this field.

In particular, the EU can

  • continue pushing strong mitigation policies by further encouraging, e.g., increased energy efficiency (in different sectors such as building, electric equipment, and vehicles), renewable energies, cleaner transport, etc.
  • modify existing EU policies that influence planning decisions and investments to make sure that these integrate mitigation and adaptation issues adequately. Such policies, e.g. the EIA and SEA directives, should be revised to include adaptation and mitigation objectives explicitly.
  • consider setting new building standards on insulation and modifying the Directive on Energy Performance of Buildings to take into account smaller buildings.
  • establish necessary links to related Commission initiatives such as the forthcoming Communication on water scarcity and droughts as well as the planned Global Climate Change Alliance.
  • help to develop tools such as the AMICA Adaptation Tool or Risk models/maps which support planning decisions; assess what is an acceptable risk and how to define it; define what land uses should be located where; and raise awareness of existing tools and best practice examples in this area.
  • ensure better funding possibilities for complex and integrated climate projects, e.g., in the framework of structural funds.
  • boost the knowledge of adaptation measures between member states, regions and municipalities by EU programmes, e.g., experiences of regions dealing with droughts or overheating can be spread to northern parts of Europe.