Herdade do Freixo do Meio is an organic certified farm of 440 hectares located in the Alentejo region in the south of Portugal, a region characterized by the multifunctional agro-silvo-pastoral system of cork and holm oak trees, named montado. This farm employs about 20 people and produces cork, vegetables, fruit, wine and herbs, and holds animals (such as sheep, cows, pig, turkey and chicken) extensively.
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Bologna, like many Southern European cities, is facing drought, extreme temperatures and water scarcity as a result of climate change. With no national or regional adaptation action plan still in place, the city of Bologna took it upon themselves to draft an Adaptation Plan to Climate Change. The plan, which was approved by the City Council on October 2015, focuses on the development of innovative, concrete measures that could be tested locally. These measures were developed as part of the LIFE+ project BLUE AP (Bologna Local Urban Environment Adaptation Plan for a Resilient City).
Groundwork London – an environmental regeneration charity part of the Groundwork federation - in partnership with Hammersmith and Fulham Council, received LIFE+ funding for the Climate-Proofing Social Housing Landscapes project in 2013. The project, which came to an end in September 2016, has demonstrated an integrated approach to climate adaptation in urban areas by undertaking a package of affordable, light-engineering climate change adaptation measures based around the retrofitting of blue and green infrastructure.
The Netherlands is a country with a long history of mitigating flood damage and adapting to flood risk. With 60% of the country below sea level, the development and implementation of flood resilient infrastructure has become an important part of the Dutch culture. The flood threat in the Netherlands is not only related to rising sea-levels. Rivers also pose a risk of flooding. This risk is increased by climate change as it causes more frequent and extreme rainfall.
As a Mediterranean coastal city, Barcelona is particularly vulnerable to climate change. Its high population density also magnifies the local heat island effect which causes an array of health and environmental challenges. Climate change projections include a rise in average temperature and a significant decrease in rainfall, with expected lasting droughts and intense heat waves. In response, Barcelona has committed to becoming a global model of a sustainable city combating urban development challenges related to climate change and population density.
The 19th century industrialisation in Lodz heavily affected the city’s rivers altering their ecosystems and hydrology. Many rivers in the densely built-up city were canalized. This resulted in a higher flood risk from runoff during heavy rain periods. Low water retention also implies reduction of soil moisture during dry spells, contributing to higher temperature and reduced air humidity (urban heat island).
The Zaragoza Water Saving City programme was initiated in 1996 in response to water scarcity. It included awareness raising campaigns, the implementation of examples of good practice and voluntary public commitments by citizens and businesses. The water tariffs were revised to provide disincentives and incentives that ensure a full cost recovery whilst maintaining affordability for low income households. The programme also involved improvements to the water distribution infrastructure to reduce the waste of water.
In Berlin inner city, plans for the development of new buildings fall under a regulation requiring a proportion of the area to be left as green space: the Biotope Area Factor (BAF) or BFF (Biotop Flächenfaktor). All potential green areas, such as courtyards, roofs and walls are included in the BAF. The regulation is a part of a larger set of documents relating to landscape planning and design and species protection. It responds to the need to encourage more green space in densely built-up urban areas.
Tamera, a farm of 154 ha, is located in the most arid region of Portugal (Alentejo). This area has shown significant trends of increasing erosion and desertification and climate change will most probably exacerbate these issues. Tamera has managed to counteract such trends of increasing erosion and desertification through the creation of a “Water Retention Landscape” (WRL) comprised of a system of lakes and of other retention systems, and also including other structures such as terraces, swales and rotational grazing ponds.
The neighbourhood of Augustenborg, during the 1980s and 1990s an area of social and economic decline, was frequently flooded by an overflowing drainage system. Between 1998 and 2002 it was regenerated. The physical changes in infrastructure included the creation of sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDS), including 6km of water channels and ten retention ponds.