Climate Action

EU Adaptation Strategy


In 2013, the European Commission adopted an EU strategy on adaptation to climate change,  welcomed by the EU Member States. The strategy aims to make Europe more climate-resilient. By taking a coherent approach and providing for improved coordination, it aims to enhance the preparedness and capacity of all governance levels to respond to the impacts of climate change.

Sheep, sea and wind turbines in the Netherlands © iStockphoto

The EU Adaptation Strategy focuses on three key objectives:

  • Promoting action by Member States: The Commission encourages all Member States to adopt comprehensive adaptation strategies (currently 25 have strategies) and provides funding to help them build up their adaptation capacities and take action. It also supports adaptation in cities through the Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy initiative.
  • 'Climate-proofing' action at EU level by further promoting adaptation in key vulnerable sectors such as agriculture, fisheries and cohesion policy, ensuring that Europe's infrastructure is made more resilient, and promoting the use of insurance against natural and man-made disasters.
  • Better informed decision-making by addressing gaps in knowledge about adaptation and further developing the European climate adaptation platform (Climate-ADAPT).

Evaluation of the EU Adaptation Strategy

The Commission published an evaluation of the strategy in November 2018.

The evaluation was accompanied by a public consultation from December 2017 to March 2018 (page available in most EU languages).

The analysis resulted in a report on lessons learned and reflections on improvements for future action, accompanied by a staff working document presenting the evaluation in detail.

Key findings of the evaluation

The evaluation shows that the strategy has delivered on its objectives, with progress recorded against each of its eight individual actions. The report, nevertheless, outlines how Europe is still vulnerable to climate impacts within and outside its borders.

Since 2013 it has become clearer that international climate action, as enshrined in the 2015 Paris Agreement, must acknowledge and tackle ongoing and projected impacts at 1.5ºC or 2ºC global warming levels.

Adaptation can and should be a powerful ally of sustainable development and disaster risk reduction efforts. EU policy must seek to create synergies between the three policies to avoid future damage and provide for long-term economic and social welfare in Europe and in partner countries.

The strategy has been a reference point to prepare Europe for the climate impacts to come, at all levels. The Commission will continue working towards its objectives. 

The evaluation also suggests areas where more work needs to be done to prepare vulnerable regions and sectors.

Adaptation Preparedness Scoreboard

The November 2018 evaluation package contains:

  • assessments of each of the Member States' national adaptation strategies (or the process leading to those strategies, when they are not yet adopted)
  • summaries of each of these assessments, in English and in most national languages
  • horizontal assessment of the 28 country fiches. 


Austrian flagAustria, Summary German flagGermany, Summary Polish flagPoland, Summary
Belgian flagBelgium, Summary Greek flagGreece, Summary Portuguse flagPortugal, Summary
Bulgarian flagBulgaria, Summary Hungarian flagHungary, Summary Romanian flagRomania, Summary
Croatian flagCroatia, Summary Irish flagIreland, Summary Slovakian flagSlovakia, Summary
Cypriot flagCyprus, Summary Italian flagItaly, Summary Slovenian flagSlovenia, Summary
Flag of the Czech RepublicCzech Republic, Summary Latvian flagLatvia, Summary Spanish flagSpain, Summary
Danish flagDenmark, Summary Lithuanian flagLithuania, Summary Swedish flagSweden, Summary
Estonian flagEstonia, Summary Flag of LuxembourgLuxembourg, Summary British flagUnited Kingdom, Summary
Finish flagFinland, Summary Maltese flagMalta, Summary   
French flagFrance, Summary Dutch flagThe Netherlands, Summary   



2018 Evaluation Package

Evaluation process

EU Adaptation Strategy Package

Other related documents