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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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Emerging approaches to coastal adaptation

This chapter examines what national governments can do to ensure all relevant stakeholders have the right incentives and tools to adapt to rising coastal risks. It analyses current practices with regard to adaptation to sea-level rise in OECD countries by reviewing national adaptation plans. Finally, it examines what institutional features need to be in place for an efficient, effective and equitable response to coastal risks, drawing on the review of existing practices and the country case study chapters of this report. This chapter was written by Lisa Danielson and Aurélien Seawert, OECD, and Alexander Bisaro, Global Climate Forum.

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