Climate change conference brings top names in adaptation research to Helsinki

Press release 2012-08-29 at 12:00

Press release by SYKE and Finnish Meteorological Institute

More frequent floods, warmer winters and summer droughts are current examples of the consequences of climate change in various parts of the world. An international conference arranged in Finland will present solutions for adapting to climate change.

The Second Nordic International Conference on Climate Change Adaptation, to be held in Helsinki in late August, will bring together renowned climate change researchers, politicians and business leaders.

Climate change brings threats and opportunities – provision and solutions as focal points of the Conference

Many studies show unquestionably that the climate of the Nordic countries has also changed within the past few decades. This increases economic risks but also creates opportunities for benefiting from climate change. “We should take adaptation seriously. The more the adaptation to climate change is postponed, the more expensive it will be and the less time we will have to benefit from innovations and the positive impacts of changes,” Research Professor Adriaan Perrels of the Finnish Meteorological Institute points out.

The Conference is a clear indication that the Nordic countries are very active in climate change research. The quality of the research is generally high. In the Nordic countries, adaptation programmes are drawn up by the authorities, but recently representatives of the private sector have also begun to pay increasing attention to climate change. In addition to understanding the impacts of climate change, more emphasis is given to provision and the development of solutions. Manifestations of this work include the climate information and advisory service centres established in many countries, as well as the associated Internet portals. Finland has, a web service of a high international standard, dealing with climate change issues.

A conference with a varied programme and top-level experts

The conference presentations are based on practical examples and research findings. The Conference offers eight keynote presentations and 150 oral and poster presentations providing the latest insights regarding both climate change adaptation research and planned and implemented adaptation measures. The programme covers a wide range of topics, including local and regional adaptation plans, climate portals and climate services, challenges faced by developing countries, cost estimation, risk management, urban planning, impacts on forestry and agriculture, legal and regulatory issues, scenarios, and aspects of health and wellbeing.

Among the keynote speakers are internationally renowned experts who have studied, for instance, the economic impacts of climate change and the vulnerability of various population groups and regions. The Conference will also have two plenary panels with contributions by political decision-makers, business leaders and esteemed representatives of the academic community.

A joint initiative of Nordic networks

The Conference is a result of cooperation between the Finnish Environment Institute and the Finnish Meteorological Institute. These two institutes have made the Conference possible with the help of the Nordic Top-level Research Initiative, especially the NORDCLAD-Net and NONAM climate networks. The Scientific Committee behind the Conference is comprised of distinguished climate change researchers from all of the Nordic countries. The Conference is sponsored by the following bodies: NordForsk, an organisation under the Nordic Council of Ministers; Mistra-SWECIA, a Swedish research programme; the Academy of Finland; and the City of Helsinki.

Additional information

Research Professor Adriaan Perrels, Finnish Meteorological Institute, 
tel. +358 50 583 8575,

Research Professor Timothy Carter, Finnish Environment Institute, 
tel. +358 40 740 5403,

Professor Mikael Hilden, Finnish Environment Institute, 
tel. 040 740 1675,

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