To counter the consequences of climate change, multifunctional nature-based solutions for climate adaptation, such as sponge city concepts, are increasingly coming into focus. As part of the Federal Environment Agency-funded project "Climate adaptation naturally! Nature-based solutions for communities", funded by the German Federal Environment Agency, Ecologic Institute organises a series of events addressing selected aspects of nature-based climate adaptation. At the municipal level, however, nature-based solutions for climate adaptation have not yet been anchored in political strategies in many places. In addition, there are often uncertainties about legal options for action at the municipal level in order to plan and implement nature-based solutions in a targeted manner.
At the practical forum "Climate Adaptation on the Ground", which was organised by Ecologic Institute with the support of the Berlin Senate Department for Mobility, Transport, Climate Protection and the Environment (SenMVKU), around 40 participants discussed political and legal options for promoting nature-based solutions for municipal climate adaptation.
After welcoming addresses by Clemens Haße, Federal Environment Agency, and Prof. Dr. Stefanie Hennecke, SenMVKU, Dr. Susanne Albrecht (Leibniz Institute of Ecological Urban and Regional Development) presented the current legal framework relevant to the planning and implementation of nature-based climate adaptation measures. She emphasised the central role of urban land use planning, which offers municipalities a variety of options for implementing appropriate measures. Sophie Wehmeier (City of Leipzig) then presented Leipzig's activities to integrate water-sensitive urban development into urban land use planning as part of the Leipzig BlueGreen II project.
After a substantive introduction to informal planning tools for nature-based climate adaptation by Benedict Bueb (Ecologic Institute), Andreas Giga (Emschergenossenschaft) illustrated the work of the future initiative Klima.Werk, in which cities from the Ruhr region and the Emschergenossenschaft are working together on a climate-silient, blue-green sponge region. In the subsequent lecture, Friedel Wielers (District of Borken) presented the Bocholter Aa Flood Alliance, an inter-municipal alliance for flood prevention that focuses on nature-based adaptation measures, among other things.
In addition, the project team presented proposals for knowledge transfer applications to be developed within the framework of the project. Through interactive formats, this practical forum also offered opportunities to engage in conversation with other participants. In small groups, participants discussed barriers and approaches to solutions as well as good examples of integrating nature-based solutions into municipal planning and administrative processes.