“The global temperature has increased, and we are witnessing extreme weather leading to unprecedented challenges … now we need to be preparing for other risks that we have not previously prepared for – every country needs to be prepared for a wide range of risks” stressed Elena Višnar Malinovská from the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Climate Action opening the first transnational Policy Dialogue meeting in the CASCADE project, 16 October, during the XV UBC General Conference in Kaunas, Lithuania. The session was entitled “Local perspectives for solving climate change related security risks – joining forces to effectively work with Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation”. During the session two reports were presented and discussed:
- “The Sendai Framework in the Baltic Sea Region: Challenges – good practices – way forward”
- “The role of local governments in adapting to the climate: overview of regulatory requirements and support mechanisms in the Baltic Sea Region”.
The objective of the session was to collect the input from the cities in the Baltic Sea Region regarding challenges and needs related to Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation.
“The purpose of the Policy Dialogue in the CASCADE project is to connect various stakeholders from different levels and sectors to discuss challenges and to identify potential solutions” explained Nina Jernberg, Policy Officer for PA Secure (EUSBSR) from the CBSS Secretariat during her presentation of the work with the report on Sendai Framework implementation in the Baltic Sea Region.
The session was opened by Risto Veivo, Co-chair of the UBC Sustainable Cities Commission and Kaspars Varpins, Chairman of the UBC Safe Cities Commission. In his opening remarks, Mr Veivo explained that: “we are trying to combine the workstreams of the two commissions and create a strong sense in the UBC to work towards building resilience”.
In the panel discussion, moderated by Valdur Lahtvee, Policy Officer for HA Climate (EUSBSR) from the CBSS Secretariat, the cities of Gdansk, Jelgava, St. Petersburg and Kaunas were represented. The city representatives shared various good practices of how they are working with Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction and provided their feedback on the two newly released reports.