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West‐Balkans Climate Change Implications and European Policy for Adaptation

By Jonka Ceka


Scientific evidence, as well as human testimony exists on climate change. Its implications may affect resource availability, human health, and security, posing a threat to economic development, as well as to social and political stability. Projected climate change is expected to affect European society in all economic sectors, goods and services, with largest impacts in the Mediterranean part of it, where Balkans belong from the bio‐geographic and politics‐military strategic aspect. Since year 2003, climate change has been increasingly addressed by EU policy‐makers and analysts as a danger and concern. Following that, climate change is being intensively discussed as a human and environmental security issue in European or regional forums. While climate change impacts have so far been of no major concern for the EU environmental policy, the security implications of climate change and security in the region have increasingly become more important for the European Commission. According to a study on the capacity to respond to climate change, of the six West Balkan countries, Albania is the most vulnerable and Croatia the least. In the framework of the SAA, there exists a structure (Regional Environmental Network for Accession ‐ RENA) that finances the regional approach to climate change adaptation, offering a coordination platform for all the countries under agreement. In this framework and also under Global Environmental Network (GEF/UNDP) support, countries are enhancing their capacity to manage climate change adaptation, based on a common platform for subregional cooperation. Future cooperative modalities for climate change adaptation in the West Balkans might consider having just one comprehensive regional adaptation instrument that would recognize all the efforts done and the contribution of each of them

Topics: Climate change; policy for adaptation; security implications; sub‐regional cooperation
Publisher: Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
Year: 2013
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