Rotterdam Awarded Global Centre of Excellence on Climate Adaptation

In early 2017, The Netherlands announced it would work with Japan and UN Environment to establish a Global Centre of Excellence on Climate Adaptation (GCECA) to help countries, institutions and businesses adapt to a changing climate. And now, we are excited to share that this international knowledge centre will be hosted in two Dutch cities: Rotterdam and Groningen. The cities were chosen based on factors such as the cities’ location, expertise on the impact of climate change, and innovative office buildings.

Rotterdam’s location in the Dutch delta and the innovative planning tht has required and inspired, have brought it international recognition for its climate adaptation initiatives and its international accessibility. Continuing with this ground-breaking work, the city is currently exploring the possibility of building a new climate-neutral floating office building for the climate centre staff.

As Chief Resilience Officer for Rotterdam, I am confident that with this global centre, Rotterdam will continue to play a leading role in helping cities and countries all over the world become more climate adaptive. The GCECA aims to accelerate climate adaptation by sharing knowledge and building new partnerships with relevant stakeholders across the globe. Cities face similar challenges due to climate change, and it is increasingly essential that they learn from and inspire one another.

The 100 Resilient Cities Network, and the organizations’ global team of experts have enabled exactly this kind of collaboration. With them, Rotterdam is able to share our knowledge and implementation of climate adaptation projects. 100RC’s president, Michael Berkowitz recently commented: “Rotterdam is uniquely positioned to host the Global Centre of Excellence on Climate Adaptation and to support its mission; not only have they led the global conversation on climate adaptation, many of the cities in our global Network have turned to Rotterdam for best practices and subject matter expertise. Cities and partners continue to reach out to them for climate adaptation guidance as the City has demonstrated an exemplary approach to building its resilience to a diverse set of challenges.”

The centre will liaise with a global network of partners, including international knowledge institutes, businesses, interest organisations, local and national governments, and the financial sector. These partners will support parties in developing more effective ways of putting climate adaptation into practice. Collectively, knowledge in fields such as infrastructure and agriculture will help to strengthen new roads, buildings, and farmland in vulnerable communities across the globe.

Parties participating in the Global Centre of Excellence on Climate Adaptation include the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL), UN Environment, National Institute for Environmental Studies, Partnership on Sustainable Low Carbon Transport (SLoCaT), S&P Global, Delta Alliance, Deltares, Stockholm Environment Institute, Acclimatise, Netherlands Water Partnership, MCII, World Resources Institute, Wageningen University and Research, UNEP DTU Partnership, SNV Netherlands Development Organisation, Caribbean Community Climate Change Center, WRI, GEF, Adaptation Fund, The Nature Conservancy, NDC Partnership, Climate-KIC.