Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Climate Change Adaptation: Drivers, Barriers and Strategy, 28 – 29 March 2011 at Imperial College of London

This course forms part of the Climate-KIC executive education offering.

Recognising the urgent need to understand and respond to the threats and opportunities posed by a changing climate, Imperial College London and Collingwood Environmental Planning Limited (CEP) are pleased to present again this popular two day training programme to provide in-depth and practical knowledge of policy and practice relating to climate change adaptation, how to understand risks and plan an effective strategic response.



Understanding of the way the climate is changing and the potential impacts on individuals and society is developing fast.  A number of key policy drivers are adding to the momentum for action.  A European Commission White Paper on climate change adaptation, adopted in April 2009, presents a framework for adaptation measures and policies to reduce the European Union's vulnerability to the impacts of climate change.  Internationally, bodies such as the World Resources Institute (WRI) and the World Business Council on Sustainable Development (WBCSD) have developed tools for helping companies assess their risks to climate change and develop adaptation strategies.

In the UK, the Climate Change Act became law in November 2008.  The Act requires the Government to prepare a programme of adaptation measures and creates new powers to direct public bodies to address climate risks and to produce an action plan.  The UK Government is preparing a Climate Change Risk Assessment to inform its National Adaptation Programme which will be published in 2012.  Some organisations (particularly those providing essential public services) are already assessing the risks posed by climate change and developing adaptation plans.  However, a report published by the Adaptation Sub-Committee of the Committee on Climate Change in September 2010 

indicated that much more needs to be done.  With recent projections suggesting that climate impacts could be even more severe than previously predicted, it is urgent for policy makers, planners and managers in the public and private sectors to understand and assess potential climate impacts in decision making.

Adaptation to climate change will be an important activity under the UK Government’s localism, decentralisation and Big Society agenda.  Local authorities can use guidance developed to support the application of the climate change adaptation indicator (NI188) to carry out climate change risk assessments and design action plans.  Similar resources are available to organisations in other sectors.

For all countries, climate change is a major challenge which needs to be addressed at every level and in all sectors of society.  Public sector organisations need to take account of potential impacts on people and the physical environment in planning, delivering and maintaining the services on which economic activity and social interactions rely.  For the private sector, there is evidence that climate change impacts will affect almost every aspect of business, but that forward planning can minimise threats and maximise opportunities.

The Aim of the Programme

The aim of the course is to:
·         Provide a sound understanding of climate change risks and their relevance to participants’ organisations
·         Describe how to identify and overcome potential barriers to adaptive action including through knowledge transfer and exchange and capacity building
·         Set out how to use strategic planning to develop adaptive capacity.


Who Should Attend?

The course is aimed at all those with an interest in understanding how to develop specific climate change adaptation strategies/action plans or how to effectively incorporate climate change adaptation into existing planning processes.  The programme will be of relevance to both public and private sector organisations and will be applicable to a UK and wider European audience.  Particularly, it may interest those involved in environmental and sustainability policy, emergency planning, spatial planning and corporate strategy within:
·         Local and regional government
·         Central government departments and their agencies
·         European institutions
·         NGOs and research organisations, including climate change partnerships
·         Businesses, including service providers in the UK that need to meet reporting requirements under the Climate Change Act.


Teaching approach:

The course will take place over two consecutive days with a natural progression between the days.  Day 1 will focus primarily on understanding the drivers and objectives for adaptation, as well as potential barriers to change and on assessing impacts, risks and vulnerability to climate change.  Day 2 will focus on identifying and appraising adaptation options, putting together an adaptation strategy and on practical case studies.  The course aims to provide participants with a detailed understanding of the issues so that they will feel confident in assessing their climate vulnerability and commissioning or developing strategies or actions to increase their adaptive capacity.
The course will make use of interactive teaching methods such as role plays, visual aids and small, facilitator-led, discussion groups.  Case studies will be used throughout the course to draw on practical examples and enhance discussion of both good, and bad, practice.  The course will also draw on UKCP09 projections wherever appropriate.
The maximum number of participants on the course will be 24, and there will be at least two trainers each day.  The course will also use one or more specialist guest speakers where appropriate.
Participants will receive a workbook to follow during the course, and all supporting and reference material will be provided in both hard copy and CD format.
The course will run from 9.00am to 5.00pm each day, with each day broadly taking the following format: 
·         Introduction / review of previous day (day 2 only)
·         Lecture and plenary discussion
·         Group work and structured activities
·         Round up and summary discussion of key issues, setting out tasks for the following day (day 1 only)
·         There will be opportunities for informal discussion / Q&A with presenters throu ghout the course

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