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Responding to Rising Seas

OECD Country Approaches to Tackling Coastal Risks

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There is an urgent need to ensure that coastal areas are adapting to the impacts of climate change. Risks in these areas are projected to increase because of rising sea levels and development pressures. This report reviews how OECD countries can use their national adaptation planning processes to respond to this challenge. Specifically, the report examines how countries approach shared costs and responsibilities for coastal risk management and how this encourages or hinders risk-reduction behaviour by households, businesses and different levels of government. The report outlines policy tools that national governments can use to encourage an efficient, effective and equitable response to ongoing coastal change. It is informed by new analysis on the future costs of sea-level rise, and the main findings from four case studies (Canada, Germany, New Zealand and the United Kingdom).

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Rising risks in coastal zones

This chapter provides an overview of how coastal zones are facing growing risks from sea-level rise, the economic costs associated with this increasing risk and the implications for policy making. The chapter reviews the current scientific understanding of sea-level rise and coastal flood hazards. It then discusses the costs and benefits of adaptation under future sea-level rise, particularly focusing on coastal protection measures. It provides analysis of coastal adaptation from a robust decision-making perspective. Finally, the policy implications of current knowledge on coastal adaptation costs and benefits are discussed, along with priorities for future research to support coastal adaptation policy.This chapter was written by Alexander Bisaro, Jochen Hinkel and Daniel Lincke, Global Climate Forum, Berlin and Division of Resource Economics, Humboldt University, Berlin.

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