Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-2024-59
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-2024-59
04 Apr 2024
 | 04 Apr 2024
Status: a revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal NHESS.

Current status of water-related planning for climate change adaptation in the Spree River basin, Germany

Saskia Arndt and Stefan Heiland

Abstract. Fuelled by climate change, low flows, heavy rain and flooding likely intensify in the future, adding to the pressures experienced by rivers in Western and Central Europe in recent decades. To meet these challenges, comprehensive water-related adaptation to climate change is indispensable. Based on the case study of the Spree River basin in Germany, this study analysed legally defined plans for water management, spatial and landscape planning for their current status of integrated climate change adaptation. To pre-structure the document analysis, eight water management fields of action for adaptation to climate change were identified using official recommendations for action. 39 % of the 28 plans analysed specify objectives and measures for adapting to climate change. Of these, 55 % address the diverse impacts of climate change in a more comprehensive way, including prevention and mitigation of droughts and floods, and protection of water ecosystems and groundwater resources. Filling these planning gaps may include more frequent updating of plans, greater focus on evidence from informal plans, multifunctional measures, and adaptation of best practice examples for systematic integration of climate change impacts and adaptation. Planning and implementing comprehensive climate change adaptation will strengthen the resilience of ecosystems and secure human livelihoods.

Publisher's note: Copernicus Publications remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims made in the text, published maps, institutional affiliations, or any other geographical representation in this preprint. The responsibility to include appropriate place names lies with the authors.
Saskia Arndt and Stefan Heiland

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on nhess-2024-59', Anonymous Referee #1, 04 May 2024
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Saskia Arndt, 06 May 2024
  • RC2: 'Comment on nhess-2024-59', Anonymous Referee #2, 05 May 2024
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Saskia Arndt, 06 May 2024
Saskia Arndt and Stefan Heiland
Saskia Arndt and Stefan Heiland

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Short summary
This study provides an overview of the current status of climate change adaptation in water management, spatial and landscape planning in the Spree River basin. Only 39 % of 28 plans analysed specify objectives and measures for adaptation to climate change. To fill this planning gap, more frequent updates of plans, a stronger focus on multifunctional measures and the adaptation of best practice examples for systematic integration of climate change impacts and adaptation are needed.
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