1. Why this publication?

Municipalities across Europe acknowledge increasingly the need to adapt to climate change and have started action. For example, the Mayors Adapt initiative[1], which is now part of the global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy[2], shows a growing number of cities joining. More cities take action outside this initiative.

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Meeting the costs of adaptation to climate change in urban areas is, however,a major challenge. The financial crisis, reduced tax incomes, the arrival of many refugee and other factors put pressure on municipal budgets. In many cities, old infrastructure for basic services and transportation needs to be replaced in the next 10 years[3], which requires significant investments. In the face of these challenges it might seem that there is little room for adaptation financing. The lack of financing has been mentioned by mayors, city managers and planners as one of the main reasons why adaptation is being taken up more slowly in European urban areas[4]. However, municipalities across Europe have found ways and innovative mechanisms to overcome the challenge of financing adaptation. These examples are collected and presented in this publication as an inspiration for other urban municipalities. The publication is likewise a useful resource for adaptation financing providers and financing programme developers from international, national or regional public bodies or private institutions – it offers insights into lessons learned on the ground regarding the most successful approaches, difficulties encountered and overcome as well as the key success factors.

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The purpose is not to present possibilities that stem from various funds varying between some thousands to some millions Euro, but to show practical implemented examples. We aim to present a broad range of measures that have been funded and/or financed from a variety of sources covering classic funds to more innovative financing mechanisms (e.g. crowd funding). More details on each case study can be found on the Climate-ADAPT web portal[5] or by contacting the city directly[6]. We strongly encourage the reader to get in contact with the case of your interest in order to set up a peer to peer learning process. A lot of the knowledge generated by city managers that have successful implemented adaptation measures in urban areas cannot be captured in such a short publication, but can rather be exchanged in personal discussions.

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[1] http://mayors-adapt.eu/

[2] http://www.covenantofmayors.eu/

[3] For further reading on challenges and solutions in urban adaptation, please see Annex “Further reading”

[4] A survey among Mayors Adapt cities in 2015, results of the Open European Day Resilient cities http://resilientcities2016.iclei.org/open-european-day/and other stakeholder events

[5] http://climate-adapt.eea.europa.eu/knowledge/tools/sat

[6] Contact details are provided for each case

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