Climate adaptation has been at the forefront of the Île-de-France region’s climate priorities with the implementation of a Regional Adaptation Plan and other crucial initiatives.
As a territory subject to the impacts associated with climate change, Île-de-France will have to deal in the future with more frequent and more intense climatic hazards such as heat waves, storm surges, and drought. Thus, the region has already started mobilizing resources.
The Île-de-France region, with the support of the Paris Region Institute (AREC), has elaborated a Regional Plan for Adaptation to Climate Change (PRACC) to continue the fight against global warming. The plan is another crucial aspect of the climate change fight that started with the transport policy in 2016 and the implementation of the Regional Energy-Climate Strategy adopted in 2018.
In November 2022, AREC conducted a vulnerability assessment of the regional climate change impacts that shows how different climate phenomena are evolving and impacting the territory. The study not only shows the impacts on biodiversity and natural resources but also analyses the risks and impacts on the population’s daily life and on the economic activities and public services of the region.
Moreover, AREC published different resources to help local authorities better understand how their territory is vulnerable to climate risks like a mapping tool for risks related to flooding, one for urban heat, and a mapping tool for the exposure of different environmental risks.
Engagement with local communities was also conducted through workshops that raised awareness about the risks of climate change. AREC with the help of its partners and volunteers developed a collection of recommendations and best practices, supplemented by video tutorials to provide concrete answers to the following questions:
How to initiate such an approach within the community? Which structures and actors should be involved? What resources should be mobilized? What method should be adopted to include and convince the inhabitants and all the actors of the territory? What concrete actions should be implemented without aggravating the risks or creating new vulnerabilities?
Another interesting initiative developed for the workshops is a card game, called “Climate at stake”, to help local officials better understand the risks their territory is confronted with. The most recently published guide for elected local officials can be found here.
Some first concrete solutions have been implemented in Paris and the cities around it. A perfect example is the cooling island map in Paris. The objective is to expand this type of tool to cover all the cities in the Île-de-France Region.
Another example presented is the “Cours Oasis” which aims to redesign and put more vegetation in the school courts in several cities of the region. Efforts must be made for the younger generation, which will be even more exposed to these problems. The playground areas, which represent significant surfaces distributed in a fairly homogeneous way over the territory, are ready to be redevelop and transformed into ‘islands of freshness’. The program has two main objectives:
The Parisian Climate Agency also collects different solutions via their tool “Adaptaville“. This tool offers solutions in multiple areas like preserving water, expanding green areas and improving the energy performance in buildings. An interesting example of their work is the pavement pads to infiltrate stormwater in parking lots. Pavement cells, usually filled with grass or gravel, can be used to make parking lots, fire lanes or tramway platforms permeable. The pits can take different forms (monolithic concrete, plastic or concrete slabs), each with its own characteristics.