Project budget10 333 529 €
ERDF amount6 200 117 €
Mean sea level rise (SLR) could increase by 1.5m-2.5m by 2100, which would see damage caused by coastal flooding in Europe increase from €1.25bn per annum currently to €961bn in just over 80 years (European Commission, 2018). Urban areas situated along the 2 Seas coastline are particularly vulnerable to extreme SLR (a combinatin of SLR, tide and storm surges). Coastal flood plans and policies focus predominantly on deploying traditional grey infrastructure/heavy engineering and ignore the use of nature-based solutions (NBS), despite the overwhelming evidence of their potential to reduce flood risk and provide multiple benefits. NBS are often not considered by policy-makers in detail due to the perceived risks around costs, potential for success, requirements for immediate protection/improvement and uncertainties regarding future change. A clear knowledge gap exists across coastal local authorities to deploy NBS as a means to reduce future coastal flood risk and economic damage.
The overall objective of SARCC is to help mainstream nature-based solutions (NBS) into coastal management and policy making, whether that is as stand alone projects or NBS-hybrids, where they are integrated into existing grey infrastructure and flood defences. The project will build the capacity of urban leaders, decision-makers and officers involved in coastal flood defences to deploy NBS and understand the additional benefits that they offer in comparison to traditional grey infrastructure.
Essentially the project will enable the Urban Partners to embed new techniques, methodologies and practices into coastal management and planning policies and demonstrate the value of NBS and share this knowledge with other coastal urban landscapes across the 2 Seas. SARCC will develop a mechanism to positively engage local communities that will be involved in public consultations, highlighting the value/benefits of NBS to coastal communities and supporting the approval process for the investment.
- A New Framework and Monitoring Tool for the selection of the most suitable nature-based solutions to deploy along coastal urban landscapes (Output 1)
- Four Nature-Based Solution Capacity Programme to engage with urban decision-makers, leaders and officers involved in coastal management (Output 2)
- A Visualisation Toolkit for local stakeholders (citizens, businesses) to support the approval of Nature-Based Solutions for Coastal Management (Output 3)
- To deploy a series of 7 Nature-Based Solution Investments, highlighting added value in comparison to traditional grey infrastructure.(Output 4)
- To Mainstream Nature-Based Solutions into long-term coastal management strategies of the Urban Partners (Output 5)
Cross border approach
The SARCC project brings together expertise from urban leaders and knowledge institutions across all 4 Member States in the 2 Seas area, it brings together experts in urban design, coastal management and policy, climate adaptation, stakeholder engagement and nature-based solutions (NBS), which have experience of different coastal issues (e.g. low lying land, population density) or policy approaches. By bringing these experts together it will enable the Partners to co-design and develop a solution that can be deployed by coastal communities across the 2 Seas that want to utilise NBS in their coastal management and policies.
Partners will establish a Cross-Border Working Group, which is designed to coordinate activities between the urban leaders and knowledge institutions across all WPs, this is particularly important for the Pilot Investments (WP4), where Partners will be able to aquire knowledge that will positively impact the results and deliverables across WP1, WP2 and WP3.
Key highlights of 2019 include the following achievements:
- Successfully achieved initiation in time for the deadline in July 2019
- SARCC has delivered a new and focussed solution for Blankenberge City
- Developed a Capacity Building Strategy and "Straw Man" approach for Micro and Macro stakeholder groups
- Completed the development of the Evaluation Tools question sets
- Delivered communication materials and launched website and newsletter
- Analysed the delivery plan for investments and workshops
- Developed draft Local Engagement Plans
- Cross Boarder meetings have taken place
- Partnership meetings have been held in
- Southend on Sea
One further meeting has taken place in Brussels
- Conferences have also been attended
- UN Conference was attended and SARCC was presented
- Nature based solutions event in Rome SARCC principals were presented