Joint Strategies for Climate Change Adaptation in Primorje Gorski Kotar County

The Regional Energy Agency Kvarner prepared the first Joint Sustainable Energy and Climate Action plan in Primorje Gorski Kotar County in Croatia, to adapt to climate change focusing on the sectors of Water supply, Health and Tourism.

Joint Strategies for Climate Change Adaptation in Primorje Gorski Kotar County

The first Joint Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan (Joint SECAP) in the Primorje Gorski Kotar County, covering the geographic area of the City of Kastav, City of Opatija, Municipality of Cavle, Municipality of Matulji, and Municipality of Viskovo, was prepared by the Regional Energy Agency Kvarner (REAK), under the scope of Interreg Italy-Croatia project Joint SECAP.

The vulnerability and risk assessment for the target area was focused on the three main sectors: Water supply, Health, and Tourism. The results indicated moderate risks for all sectors. Should the current circumstances, i.e. “business as usual” scenario continue, all sectors could face adverse consequences of climate change, which can be either direct damage to the environment, properties, infrastructure, and livelihoods (e.g., lack of water) and/or decrease in incomes followed by a decrease in employment.

Given this, adaptation measures are necessary, which was encompassed in the final (optimal) scenario developed in collaboration with relevant stakeholders. The focus group workshop gathered diverse attendees: local and County level experts, city/municipality representatives, different associations, utilities, etc., providing their expertise and advice on possible actions to alleviate expected consequences of climate change. These actions were evaluated using six criteria – how significant, urgent, cost-effective, and feasible the action is and whether it benefits other sectors (synergistic effect) and brings welfare regardless of climate change (multiple usefulness).

Finally, an integrated climate plan addressing mitigation and adaptation was developed, consisting of 24 measures, with water management having the highest number of adaptation actions considered necessary. The municipalities involved are committed to successfully implementing the set measures and motivating the local population to support the Plan execution. REAK hopes that other Croatian regions will also follow this example and tackle the preparation of further Joint Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans, which can be a good solution for smaller municipalities that do not have the capacity to engage with individual SECAPs.

This best practice is issued from our publication Sustainable Regions in Action 2022. Read it now to discover many more best practices from FEDARENE members as well as an overview of our activities.