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Climate adaptation: Coastal restoration

By Platform
View of field in front of the ocean

On 15 June, the Policy Learning Platform hosted the first episode of the climate adaptation series, focusing on coastal restoration

During the webinar, we explored inspiring solutions, good practices, guidance and recommendations backed by real-life examples from coastal regions in Italy, Spain and Ireland. 

Explore the recording, key learnings and presentations below. 

Webinar agenda

The webinar has been designed and moderated by Astrid Severin and Magda Michaliková, Thematic Experts of Low-carbon economy. 

00:01:10 Introduction by Magda Michaliková  to the topic of coastal restoration 

00:11:10 Keynote speech by Joep Verhagen, Global Lead Water and Urban, Global Center on Adaptation, The Netherlands on climate adaptation in deltas

00:28:30 Q&A: You mentioned investing in climate protection is a smart investment. How do you monetise the return of this investment? How can we attach a financial return to the money invested, when the monetary impact is rather damage avoidance than money actually earned?

00:31:45 Q&A: If you look at Europe and its approach to coastal restoration, what is your assessment? 

00:36:32 Presentation by Nil Alvarez Segura from EURECAT on challenges of coastal restoration in the Ebro Delta, Spain (Land Sea

00:47:15 Q&A: What is crucial to start a coastal restoration project? 

00:48:46 Q&A: What is the story you tell to policymakers and what story do you tell people that are living there? 

00:51:53 Q&A: How do you deal with issues such as suffering economic actors that are reluctant on climate adaptation measures? 

00:54:12 Presentation by Massimiliano Costa from Parco Delta del Po on coastal restoration measures in the Po Delta, Italy (Delta Lady

01:07:12 Q&A: Could you tell us more about the potential and the limitations of nature-based solutions? 

01:09:50 Q&A: In the HORIZON project that you presented, in which you built a dune, where did you take the sand for the restoriation from? 

01:14:18 Presentation by David Daron from AWN consulting on measuring and mapping eco-systems services in coastal habitats, Ireland (Delta Lady)

01:25:16 Q&A: What is your experience with the ecosystem services assessment and its use in this area?

Key learnings

We can take away the following key learnings from the webinar: 

  • 40% of global population lives within 100 km of the coast (20% of land mass), where about 2/3 of global GDP is generated.
  • Out of seventeen megacities around the globe, fourteen are located in coastal areas.
  • Deltas and lagoons are rich and biodiverse ecosystems that are under threat from increasing salinization, microalgae growth and lack of oxygen, decreasing water quality as well as over-tourism.
  • Coastal restoration needs to be on the economic and sustainable development agenda. It requires long-term financing commitments and dedicated governance management. While action is required immediately, climate-change adaptation is a long-term game.
  • Big potential lies in nature-based solutions, i.e. rebuilding dunes to preserve the deltas, or creating and restoring wetlands that can be used for flood prevention.
  • Ecosystem services assessment can be used as a tool for the valuation of natural resources and subsequent decision-making.
Coastal areas and rivers
Climate change