Coastal zone: The interface between the land and the sea.

Dike/coastal realignment: The process of changing the line of currently maintained coastal defences, either by shortening defence length, moving defences inland or removing defences altogether. This allows for the creation of intertidal habitat (e.g. salt marshes), which can provide a natural buffer against tides and storm surges.

Ecosystem-based adaptation: Ecosystem-based adaptation is the use of biodiversity and ecosystem services as part of an overall adaptation strategy to help people to adapt to the adverse effects of climate change. It aims to maintain and increase the resilience and reduce the vulnerability of ecosystems and people.

Maladaptation: Actions that may lead to increased risk of adverse climate-related outcomes or increased vulnerability to climate change.

Nature-based solutions: Refers to an umbrella concept for various ecosystem-related approaches. It covers actions to protect, sustainably manage and restore natural or modified ecosystems. Nature-based solutions aim to achieve resilience in ways that enhance the resilience of ecosystems, their capacity for renewal and the provision of services.

Resilience: The ability of households, communities and nations to absorb and recover from shocks, while positively adapting and transforming their structures and means for living in the face of long-term stresses, change and uncertainty.

Risk: The potential for consequences where something of value is at stake and where the outcome is uncertain, recognising the diversity of values. Risk is often represented as probability or likelihood of occurrence of hazardous events or trends multiplied by the impacts if these events or trends occur. In this report, the term risk is often used to refer to the potential, when the outcome is uncertain, for adverse consequences on lives, livelihoods, health, ecosystems and species, economic, social and cultural assets, services (including environmental services), and infrastructure (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2014[1]).

Sea-level rise: The change in sea levels caused by global warming (e.g. though thermal expansion of the ocean, melting glaciers and polar ice caps, and ice loss from Greenland and West Antarctica ice sheets). The temporal average for a given location is mean sea level and the spatial average is global mean sea level. Changes in local relative sea level can vary significantly from changes in global mean sea level.

Transformational adaptation: Actions or interventions opened when the limits of incremental adaptation (e.g. actions where the central aim is to maintain an existing system or process) have been reached (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2014[1]).

Uncertainty: “A state of incomplete knowledge, resulting from a lack of information or from disagreement about what is known or even knowable. It may have many types of sources, from imprecision in the data to ambiguously defined concepts or terminology, or uncertain projections of human behaviour. Uncertainty can therefore be represented by quantitative measures (e.g. a probability density function) or by qualitative statements e.g. reflecting the judgment of a team of experts)”.

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