Expert meeting on implementation of large-scale demonstration projects for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation: Challenges and Opportunities – 27 February 2019, UNESCO HQ, Paris, France – Operandum project
Author: Roxane Marchal, CCR
UNESCO, the European Commission, PHUSICOS, RECONECT, EXPRESSO, OPERANDUM and NAIAD met in Paris last February to share their visions on common issues related to socio-economic, modelling, risk assessment and policy indicators on Nature-Based Solutions, Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation.
The objectives of this meeting were to learn about international expert visions from UNESCO, UN organisations, European Commission and NBS sister projects on common issues related to socio-economical, modelling, risk assessment and policy indicators on NBS, DRR and CCA.
The EU sister projects represented were OPERANDUM (www.operandum-project.eu) dedicated to open-air laboratories and knowledge platform, RECONECT (www.reconect.eu) devoted to co-benefits and practical examples (Dutch room for the river), PHUSICOS (www.phusicos.eu) focusing on mountainous regions and cascading effects, ESPRESSO (www.espressoproject.eu) has a vision for future put in practice with serious game and risk analysis. Then, NAIAD project concepts have been presented from the reinsurance point of view (CCR partner), then focusing on practical results gathered at the end of the day on hazard, exposure and risk assessments. The project aims to lead the paradigm change to prevention, to estimate investments needed, co-benefits and avoided damage related to NBS implementation using the natural assurance scheme framework.
The European Commission Disaster Risk Management Knowledge Centre (DRMKC) (www.drmkc.jrc.ec.europa.eu) also presented EU efforts on disaster risk management through sharing information in a risk data hub from scientists, to practitioners and policymakers. –Gathering the key information from the numerous EU projects on NBS is a challenge: we need well-designed collective platforms-.
The discussion raised questions about the social acceptance of NBS among citizens and stakeholders. The reinsurance sector was questioning on how to foster NBS implementation by decision makers. Some of the ways are to assess NBS effectiveness on reducing water level through damage curves assessment and through the avoided damages. The use of UNESCO natural sites, namely geoparks as DEMOs sites, raised also large discussions.
The second part of the day was dedicated to large institutions’ visions on these topics through the UNESCO strategy on climate change “changing minds not the climate”. The UN Environment highlighted the principle of “working with nature, not against it” based on a combination of measures with strong evidence to convince policymakers. In accordance with these elements, IUCN reminded us that NBS are an umbrella concept to be used for society’ resilience. OECD and the EC focused on water-related investments and institutions to be used for financing projects.
This day of exchange has given an overview of concepts and methods applied in NBS/DRR/CCA topics. Thus, sharing and integrating common visions and methodologies replicable at different scales are the core legacy of the EU projects. The importance of the NBS taskforce on indicators ongoing was also highlighted by the EC.