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Press release archive: 2009

A portal providing tools for mitigating climate change and adapting to it

27.2.2009 9:00

Photo: Hannu Manninen

A portal providing tools for mitigating climate change and adapting to it
In the coming years, tools will be available for taking climate change into account in planning and decision-making at municipal and regional levels. Through the Climate Change Community Response Portal now under construction, it will be possible to explore the impacts of climate change at local level and to find means for supporting decision-making and planning. At the same time, the portal will gather the diverse climate change data produced by various actors and will present them in a uniform format.

Climate change has an impact at local level and must be considered there. For instance, planning of transport systems, town planning and other community planning are sectors where people must be able to respond to challenges posed by the changing climate.

The EU project coordinated by the Finnish Meteorological Institute will result in an easy-to-use layman's web service that helps Finnish local and regional authorities to meet the requirements of sustainable development. The portal enables regional investigation of climate change and its impacts; this information can then be utilised when considering the alternative approaches of mitigation and adaptation. Representatives of many municipal bodies will participate in the development and testing of the portal. This helps ensure that the portal will become a concrete and user-friendly tool, especially for actors at local and regional levels.

The portal also makes it possible to obtain a comprehensive picture of climate change and its current situation. Data produced by different actors are collected and organised in a compatible form that enables parallel examination and comparisons. The portal is built in cooperation by the Finnish Meteorological Institute, the Finnish Environment Institute, and Helsinki University of Technology/Centre for Urban and Regional Studies. The intention is that later the portal will also be supplemented with tools and information produced by other actors.

The portal, to be implemented in Finnish, Swedish and English, is also well suited for increasing general awareness of climate change. Schools and educational institutions can utilise the portal as teaching material.
The portal has web-tools that illustrate the various aspects of climate change:

  • The Climate Change Explained Wizard is an e-learning tool explaining the background and mechanisms of climate change.
  • The Climate Data and Scenarios Wizard describes the current and future climate at local and regional levels.
  • The Impacts Wizard describes the environmental impacts of climate change.
  • The Community Response Wizard is a local-scale tool supporting adaptation and mitigation measures taken by local actors.
The first sections of the portal will be published in 2011. The project receives funding from the Information & Communication component of the EU's LIFE+ programme in 2009-2011.

Additional information:

Project Manager, Researcher Juha A. Karhu, Finnish Meteorological Institute, e-mail: JuhaA.Karhu@fmi.fi , tel. +358 9 1929 4175, mobile tel. +358 50 359 2183.