The Paris Adaption Strategy is aimed at tackling the main climate change-related challenges facing the city, including: heatwaves, urban heat island effect, flooding and droughts. The programme is also concerned with a number of other sustainability issues, from air pollution and health related risks, to the climate refugees challenge and water scarcity.
In addition to focusing on a number of important climate risks, there are also practical hurdles in implementing the Paris Adaptation Strategy. It has been developed over 2 years, involving many parties including municipal departments, city partners and other impacted stakeholders. This kind of collaboration among such a wide variety of parties can prove challenging.
Several of the strategy’s actions and objectives are being implemented, while others have yet to begin. Some of the actions being implemented by 2020, include:
• A greening programme for the city to decrease heat-related risks by 2020: +20,000 trees planted, +30 hectares (ha) of green spaces, 1 million m² of green roofs and walls, 20 green streets, and at least 1 experimental cooling pathway.
• Help for Parisians when it is hot, with the aim of being no more than a 7-minute walk from a cool place by 2020: +2 new open-air swimming pools, +2 natural swimming areas open to the public, open parks 24/7 during heat spells.
• A less vulnerable food supply: 33 ha of urban agriculture in Paris by 2020; 50% of municipal catering to come from sustainable food by 2020; 25% of food consumed in Paris locally produced by 2050.
The core idea of the Paris Adaptation Strategy is to anticipate climate change risks and their impacts on resource depletion – for the city itself, but more importantly, for the visitors, workers and inhabitants of Paris.
The project has important economic, environmental and health co-benefits. For example, the city administration aims to provide better quality of life for Parisians during heat spells by adapting working times and providing new open-air places to use and socialise in during the summer. The strategy also hopes to deliver a greener and cooler city, with less air pollution and better preparation and anticipation of new diseases.