Through the STAR2Cs project, KCC and partners have identified a gap between national plans and local actions that are timed, costed and integrated into delivery mechanisms. The Climate Change Adaptation Programme will address this issue for Kent and Medway by identifying relevant actions from the Climate Change Risk and Impact Assessment for Kent and Medway (CCRIA) and the UK’s National Adaptation Plan, and articulating them to stimulate targeted adaptation action in Kent and Medway.
KCC is building on the findings of the CCRIA and the National Adaptation Programme to develop a localised Adaptation Programme for Kent and Medway that identifies what needs to be done by Kent County Council and our partners to adapt to our changing climate. The Adaptation Programme will identify incremental actions to be taken to make Kent more resilient to climate change across seven key sectors:
- Local Government
- Natural Environment
- People and the Built Environment
The Adaptation Programme aims to build resilience for projected future climate in a way that minimises financial impacts of climate risk, takes advantage of opportunities from positive impacts, is flexible to uncertainties and changing circumstances, and provides wider co-benefits. In this way, no matter what the future looks like, the county will be more resilient for our communities, our economy, and our natural environment.
One of the reasons why an implementation gap exists between national strategy and local action is often the lack of local involvement in the design and content of national adaptation plans. To try to overcome this problem, KCC has worked closely with key people and organisations across the seven sectors to incorporate their ideas and opinions regarding climate action into the development of the Adaptation Programme.
To date, we have conducted a cross-sector climate adaptation survey looking at climate risks, adaptation actions already underway, and barriers to adaptation that received over 120 responses from across the county. This was followed up with structured and semi-structured interviews with key informants to better understand the climate challenges Kent faces.
Through collaboration and co-creation of the Programme, we hope that the final strategy document and the actions that lead from it, will be co-created with the people that, ultimately, will be truly representative of the needs of the different sectors and maximise implementation of actions.
The Adaptation Programme for Kent and Medway is currently in development and will be available to download from here in Summer 2021.