The effects of climate change are now largely visible in all European regions: floods, droughts, fires, heatwaves, etc. Often, the consequences increase at a faster pace compared to what was originally planned thus creating more uncertainties at local level. Public authorities answer risks incurred by citizens in emergency situations with immediate security measures. Understanding the implications of climate change and prioritising the measures that need to be taken becomes a priority but complex exercise for these authorities.
The monitoring of undertaken actions and the modelling of climate impacts require an access to reliable local data. As resource centres for public authorities and communities, regional and local agencies can play a crucial role in developing climate services focusing on local data sharing and supporting the planning and decision-making processes.
The method of data acquisition, processing and dissemination requires know-how in terms of setting partnerships, data modelling and visualisation. In the case of adaptation, the data used to measure the impacts of climate change is very diverse, coming from multiple sectors such as agriculture, forestry, water management or tourism. For each sector, it is important to focus on the appropriate indicators by initially identifying the vulnerabilities of territories.
As these indicators can be very specific, it is necessary to form win-win data-sharing partnerships. These exchanges build on bottom-up (e.g. field study or local observation) or top-down (data disaggregation from various sources) processes. The EU ENERGee-Watch network of regional energy and climate data hubs coordinated by FEDARENE and supported by the H2020 ENERGee-Watch project provides key capacity building tools and support to regional and local climate agencies willing to develop new climate data services aimed at supporting local action.
As reliable data is one of the most important tools in the fight against climate change, proper data sharing and monitoring can bring significant improvements in how we, as cities and regions, take climate action. With the help of such initiatives, local and regional energy agencies can contribute to the successful implementation of adaptation and mitigation measures by exchanging experience and know-how.