Responses to coastal climate change: Innovative strategies for high end scenarios - Adaptation and mitigation


Project timeline
November 2013
36 months
October 2016
General Information
Coastal areas concentrate vulnerability to climate change due to high levels of population, economic activity and ecological values. RISES-AM addresses the economy-wide impacts of coastal systems to various types of high-end climatic scenarios (including marine and riverine variables). It encompasses analyses from global to local scales across the full range of representative concentration pathways (RCPs) and shared socio-economic pathways (SSPs). It considers the still significant uncertainties in “drivers” (physical and socio-economic) and coastal system responses (e.g. land loss or uses, biological functions, economic productivity) within a hazard-vulnerability-risk approach. The emphasis is on the advantages of flexible management with novel types of coastal interventions (e.g. “green” options) within an adaptive pathway whose tipping points will be identified/quantified in the project. The assessment of impacts and adaptation deficits will be based on modelling tools that will provide a set of objective and homogeneous comparisons. The extended/improved suite of models will be applied across scales and focusing on the most vulnerable coastal archetypes such as deltas, estuaries, port cities and small islands. This will lead to a motivated analysis of the synergies and trade-offs between mitigation and adaptation, including what level and timing of climate mitigation is needed to avoid social, ecological and economic adaptation tipping points in coastal areas. We shall evaluate the direct and indirect costs of high-end scenarios (e.g. the increasing demand for safety under increasingly adverse conditions) for coasts with/without climate change and contribute to determining which policy responses are needed at the European and global levels in the context of international climate discussions. The project will finally transfer results to authorities, users and stakeholders from all economic sectors converging in coastal zones, including the climate research community dealing with more generalistic assessments.
HZG will contribute through a case study on the vulnerability by extreme sea level events in the Elbe estuary, where emphasis is put on the metropolitan region of the city of Hamburg. Time and path dependence of adaption options will be addressed by assessing a time window in which decisions will be required to enhance defenses in various adaptation scenarios considered.
EU-Programme Acronym and Subprogramme AreaFP7-ENV-2013-two-stage
Project TypeCollaborative Project
Contract NumberGrant Agreement 603396
Co-ordinatorUniversitat Politecnica De Catalunya (ES)
Total Eligible Costs (€) HZG Eligible Costs (€) EC Funding for HZG (€)
Contact Person at HZG Dr. Ralf Weisse, Institute of Coastal Research, KSA Phone: +49 4152 87 2819 Fax: +49 4152 87 2818
E-mail contact
Worldwide Europe

Centro Euro-Mediterraneo per i Cambiamenti Climatici SCARL (IT), Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel (DE), GCF-Global Climate Forum EV (DE), Institut De Recerca I Tecnologia Agroalimentaries (ES), Institutul National de Cercetare - Dezvoltare Marina (RO), Natural Environment Research Council (UK), Stichting Deltares (NL), Stichting VU-VUMC (NL), Universitat Politecnica De Catalunya (ES), University of Southampton (UK), University of Sussex (UK)
RISES-AM website
Last Update: 15. May 2017