Aberdeen selected for project to develop climate resilient city strategy

Aberdeen City Council and the University of Aberdeen have won support for an ambitious new Aberdeen Adapts project that will support Aberdeen to become a city resilient to the impacts of current and future climate change.

The Council’s own records show that the impacts of severe weather events including flooding, road closures, disruption to schools and other council services, are already an issue for the authority, communities and for local businesses.

The Aberdeen Adapts project will bring together a range of organisations and businesses to identify the specific challenges for the area and identify the new opportunities that come from a changing climate. The aim is to create a positive and ambitious Aberdeen Adapts strategy.

Taking early action to increase resilience and adapt will generate longer-term savings, maximise opportunities for growth and make better use of resources.

Aberdeen City Council Communities, Housing and Infrastructure vice convener Councillor Jean Morrison said: “It is crucial that we as a local authority play a key role in both developing an understanding and building awareness of how climate change will impact on our communities, economy, infrastructure and environment.

“By working with the University of Aberdeen, and organisations across the city, we can develop a planned approach to safeguard the city from any potential future threats and put in place a strategy to build Aberdeen’s resilience to climate change.”

The project has been selected to receive support from the Scottish Government funded Adaptations Scotland programme. This support will provide expertise and funding for project workshops and engagement across the city.

Roseanna Cunningham Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform said: “Climate change is happening now and scientists tell us we must be prepared for more extreme weather conditions more often in the years ahead. Scotland has set an example to the world by meeting its ambitious greenhouse gas reduction targets six years early, but we must, and will, do more.

“We also have to prepare for the impact of climate change here at home. That’s why I welcome the important work being undertaken by Aberdeen Adapts and its focus on ensuring the region increases its resilience, while maximising the economic opportunities this vital work presents.”

Anna Beswick, Programme Manager for the Adaptation Scotland programme, said: “The impacts of climate change are already affecting Scotland. Increases in severe weather, coastal change, rising temperature, and changes in water availability will affect Aberdeen in the years ahead. We are delighted to support the Aberdeen Adapts project which will raise awareness of these challenges and identify opportunities for increasing resilience.”

Tavis Potts, Senior Lecturer in Human and Environmental Geography at the University of Aberdeen, said: “The School of Geosciences is supporting the project through the MSc in Environmental Partnership Management. This work will involve active research and support for student learning and development, as well as facilitating visualisation sessions looking at climate impacts with community stakeholders.”

A launch workshop for the Aberdeen Adapts project will take place on Monday 21 November at Aberdeen Town House. Anyone interested in attending can register interest with Alison Leslie at: alleslie@aberdeencity.gov.uk