On 4 March 2005, the Belgian Council of Ministers approved the research programme “Science for a Sustainable Development” (2005-2009). This research programme is the continuation of the first and second Scientific Support Plan for a Sustainable Development Policy (SPSD I (1996-2001) and SPSD II (2000-2005)).
The priority research areas of this Programme are:
goal of the research actions is
to support specific decision-making in relation to both sector-related
and trans-sectoral problems.
The ADAPT project falls
into the category
of climate-related research.
It is known that adaptation measures will be necessary to protect populations and ecosystems against climate-related hazards in the next decades (IPCC, 2001; EEA, 2004). It remains for the policy-maker to select among a wide range of options and possibilities of adaptation measures. In general, the ways and means required to implement these measures appear to be considerable, when compared with the risks to be avoided.
international programmes stipulate that the choice of adaptation
measures must reflect their potential to produce benefits which will
surpass their costs.
The overall objective of this
project is to develop and demonstrate an
efficient management tool being a cost-benefit analysis based
instrument for the integrated assessment of adaptation measures.
project consists in two parts,
the first one
being a "general introductionary study" and the other, a "case study"
for which the methodology will be refined.
The general introductionary study will provide a synthesis of the knowledge and facts available concerning the effects of climate change, their intensity and probable progression in time. The synthesis will provide a clear overview of facts and their uncertainty limit, focussed on Belgium.
In order to develop and to test the methodology, a case study on a target impact has been chosen: flooding in the two main Belgian river basins. From then on, the project management tool, the subject matter of the methodology, will be refined on the basis of a precise case of impacts, which will allow the idea of the methodology to be studied in depth.
The analysis of adaptation strategies related to flooding will be built on a schema comprising the following steps:
subject is vast and complex,
and needs to be
managed in a multidisciplinary approach, that takes into account the
economic, social and environmental impacts (holistic way), and their
mutual interaction in accordance with the principle of development and
sustainable management. The subject will be investigated and analyzed
by five partners of complementary scientific expertises belonging to
the three pillars of sustainable development and starting from the
technical and strategic considerations.
the process, scientific
support for the
authorities will be sought out and contacts will be established with
the leaders of other eventual research projects within the framework of
this call for proposals.
integrated tool will be built
on the basis
of criteria such as efficiency feasibility and acceptability framework
and their limitations, for which uncertainty analysis will be a
permanent preoccupation. Nevertheless, the instrument will have to be
sufficiently flexible to be applied to other forms of impacts
identified in the first part of the study. This instrument in fact will
have to be finally considered as the project management keystone of all
the issues studied.
a result, the possible, natural
response strategies will then be identified. Development and evaluation
of adaptation alternatives (anticipatory or autonomous) by means of
cost-benefit analysis will lead to concrete results for
decision makers in allocation and scheduling resources for adaptation
as well as for adaptation tradeoffs. They will also meet stakeholder
needs over time, given the uncertainties.
The different tasks (work packages) of this projects are the followings:
1. GENERAL STUDY AND EVALUATION OF CLIMATE CHANGE IN BELGIUM (overview)
2. CASE STUDY– FLOODING
2.1. Evaluating the impact of global change induced flooding on river basins
a) Application of hydraulic
the assessment of hydrological effects due to climate change, as input
for other effects
b) Translating hydraulic modelling results into input for the assessment of secondary impacts
2.2. Evaluating secondary impacts of global change induced flooding on vulnerable sectors in river basins (PhaseI)
a) General approach and integrated economic aspects
a) Ecological Indicator for quantifying and evaluating change in ecosystems good and services under climate change
a) Sociological aspects
2.3. Determining adaptation measures (response)
a) Definition of both technical
b) Application of hydraulic modelling for defining and evaluating adaptation measures: partim. technical measures on the river Meuse
2.4. Evaluating costs of adaptation measures
2.5. Cost-benefit analysis
2.6. Recommandations on adaptation measures
Outlines of work package 2 (©2006 CEESE-ULB)
These different tasks will be
achieved over two
two-year periods. The first phase will treat Tasks 1, 2.1, 2.2
2.3. The second phase completes the
study of Tasks 2.2 and 2.3, and will finish off the
At the end of the first phase, the study will be evaluated by foreign experts. Besides this, a follow-up committee has been set up to give an external view on the subject and at the same time supervise the study.
The ADAPT project also joins synergies with the CCI-HYDR project (an project financed by the Belgian Science Policy) because both projects are working on the same issue of flooding but with different approaches and different objectives.