Involving the general public in adapting to climate change
Topic of the practice
Reducing the impact of climate change by a balanced approach of building public support AND regional identity to reduce CO2 emission and to adapt to more extreme weather conditions.
Good Practice Information
Innovative public campaigns for awareness raising related to climate change (“information” strategy) with multiple aspects (Limburg/Flanders): A) Municipalities challenge inhabitants to save energy trying to modify their behaviour of energy consumption and its effects on CO2 emission. It contains interesting aspects of governance as several administrative levels and organizations are involved. Campaign “Energy hunting”. B) Target group members are educated to let them implement climate policies themselves, done by training of volunteers to become “Energymaster”, who afterwards advised house owners in their area about how to save energy. C) Use of innovative communication strategies: campaign “Limburg Isoleert” (http://www.limburgisoleert.be, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5TtGcZ74kf0 ), and the traveling Blue Pearl (a glass bowl where you can put your dreams related to the pilot project of “De Wijers”)
Although this good practice is stronger related to mitigation of climate change than adaptation (the core issue in F:ACTS!), the partnership has identified this as a good practice since it creates a sense of urgency. The innovative public campaigns are part of the regional 'branding' of Limburg, as a green and healthy province that makes serious efforts to deal with climate change. It follows a sparkling, participatory approach of building public support which creates the right environment to invest as well in climate change adaptation measures.
Evidence of success
The support centre for sustainable building in Limburg (DUBOLimburg, 8FTE) informs and supports local people, municipalities, professionals, NGO's about sustainable building (technics, subsidies, ...). This supportcentre had such a good influence that the Flemish government decided to found a support centre in every province in Flanders (5). The Climate Communities (energy neighboorhoods) saved 6,18% energy (172.338,74 kg CO2 reduction) in 2010. The results of the energy hunt (runs till 31/03/11) will be available at the end of 2011.
Contact details to obtain further information on the practice
Patrick Boucneau (Lily Gora)
Province of Limburg (Flanders, Belgium)
Annex completed on: 03-29-2011