EU Missions are a new way to bring concrete solutions to some of our greatest challenges. They will deliver impact by putting research and innovation into a new role, combined with new forms of governance and collaboration, as well as by engaging citizens. One of the five missions’ area is adaptation to climate change. This mission area will support adjustment and solutions to climate change, but also address regions, cities and communities to lead the societal transformation
As climate change affects different regions, sectors of the economy and members of society in different ways, the Mission must engage with the widest spectrum of EU regions and local actors. Indeed, support from Member States, their cities and regions will be crucial in the implementation of the Mission as key agents of change in deploying new technologies, experimenting innovative solutions that address local needs, and leading different stakeholders towards the digital and the green transitions.
The Implementation Plan published in September 2021 outlines the main goal of the Mission, which is to support at least 150 European regions and communities in becoming climate-resilient by 2030. In doing so, the Mission will engage local actors, notably in climate-vulnerable regions, as well as citizens by funding projects facilitating and requiring their involvement.
Considering that the level of preparedness for climate impacts varies substantially between regions in Europe, this R&I support will be provided in different ways.
· Specific objective 1: Preparing and planning for climate resilience to provide general support to European regions and communities to better understand, prepare for and manage climate risks and opportunities.
· Specific objective 2: Accelerating transformations to climate resilience o work with at least 150 regions and communities to accelerate their transformation to a climate resilient future, supporting them in the co-creation of innovation pathways and the testing of solutions.
· Specific objective 3: Demonstrating systemic transformations to climate resilience o deliver at least 75 large-scale demonstrations of systemic transformations to climate resilience across European regions and communities.
With a systemic and bottom-up approach, the Mission is ideally positioned to promote policy coordination across different levels of government and to align EU funding and actions with the Member States.
This is reflected in the way the Adaptation Mission focuses on driving the transformation to the end point, expanding from the solutions demonstrated on a small scale and adapting them to local circumstances – to help make climate adaptation smarter, more systemic and faster at the level of regions and communities.
As all regions and cities have different climate vulnerabilities and levels of preparedness, and can develop different paths towards a climate-resilient future, the Mission aims to get different regions and communities on board and support them, alongside the national adaptation strategies, on their specific journey, whether they are just starting out or are already taking steps.
The Mission also wants to adopt a systemic approach by looking at several themes such as key community systems like critical infrastructure, land use and food systems, water management, and health and wellbeing, and enabling conditions like knowledge, governance or behavioural change.
The large-scale demonstrators to be developed as part of the Mission will follow such as systemic approach and feature examples of breakthrough innovations implemented in real life such as floodplain restoration, vertical farming, prototyping of insurance approaches, or a ‘perfectly adapted’ city ready to stand a storm or heatwave.
Finally, the Mission will take an inclusive approach and involving citizens. Indeed, regions, cities and local authorities need to steer the process to build climate resilience “on the ground” in an inclusive way, engaging with local stakeholders, the civil society, the business community, industry, research organisations, and citizens.
To this end, the Mission will help regions organise citizen assemblies to bring citizen views into the development of the adaptation policy from the outset.
The Missions WP 2021 amendment was adopted on Wednesday 15 December. The calls are aailable on the Funding and Tenders Portal.
An information day on the Mission Adaptation to Climate Change will take place on 19 January and a first Mission Forum will be organized on 7 June 2022.
The Horizon Europe WP 2022 Amendment will be published end April 2022.
The objective is to sign grants and start of First Mission projects by December 2022.