⚠️This is the first operational version of the handbook, but it is still a work in progress and will be heavily updated during 2024!⚠️

Principles

Principles#

Adhering to key principles throughout a CRA process is helpful to ensure a common background and to pro-vide context for the operational framework steps. Special emphasis of principles is given at the beginning and ending of a CRA cycle. This section describes key principles that are central to a comprehensive approach to climate risk assessment that is fair, robust and prudent.

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Fig. 2 This illustration is created by Scriberia with The Turing Way community. Used under a CC-BY 4.0 licence. DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.3332807#

  • Social justice, equity and inclusivity Both, the impacts and responses to climate change affect people and communities in different ways. Many groups in society are particularly vulnerable to climate risks or unequally profit from risk mitigation actions. Especially the socio-economic status (poverty, health, age, gender, education, ethnicity, etc.) affects the individual climate vulnerability and climate risk situation. For example, migrant communities, communities in a low-income neighbourhood, poor and elderly people, disabled, as well as women are disproportionally affected by climate risks or disasters due to e.g. lack of information, language barriers, varying precarities, ascribed roles in society, differing perception and awareness of risk, etc. Being affected by climate risks or disasters may further worsen pre-existing inequalities. A comprehensive treatment of social justice is needed in a CRA to address distributional, procedural and restorative aspects. The concept of just resilience aims at targeting the particular needs of vulnerable and marginalised groups, thus including the underlying social drivers of climate risk as well as its distributional aspects of costs and benefits.

  • Quality, rigour and transparency Throughout a CRA quality, rigour and transparency need to be ensured. The CLIMAAX Framework and Toolbox provide state-of-the-art guidelines and practices which are backed by scientific findings, international standards and pilot region application. Assuming ownership of the CRA process, its individual steps and the risk outcome supports the implementation of all three principles. Further, using local and regional data and (climate) services or connecting with local and regional data hubs and data spaces may increase transparency.

  • Precautionary approach A Climate Risk Assessment is always confronted with uncertainties, complexities and changing situations. Flexibility in the CLIMAAX Framework and various mechanisms in the Toolbox aim at minimising the impact of evolving circumstances or the discrepancy between future scenarios and unfolding reality. However, CRA are a multifactorial process where variables such as societal values may change over time; where evidence or confidence is restricted, the process benefits from a precautionary approach instead of inaction.