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“Some parts of the City are built on reclaimed land areas that are already subject to flooding which would be exacerbated by impacts of climate change such as sea-level rise, more frequent and intense storm events, king tides, and storm surges.”


“60 percent of residents of Karachi city live in slum areas and do not have the adequate facilities to sustain the heat waves.”


Climate Change Risk Assessment and Management

Adaptation to the adverse effects of climate change is a key issue for all cities. While the world moves to reduce GHG emissions, cities already face devastating impacts from climate change including increased incidences of extreme weather events, floods, droughts and water scarcity.

Nearly every C40 city is exposed to significant physical risks from climate change 93 percent (39) of disclosing cities report that they consider themselves at risk due to climate change. The near unanimity of this response demonstrates a high level of awareness in C40 cities about the potential dangers resulting from warmer temperatures and other local climate impacts, and shows that many cities have passed a crucial first step on the road to climate resilience.

Climate change is already affecting cities—and they anticipate it will get worse

23 C40 cities (54 percent of reporting cities) identify risks from climate change effects that are already underway or that are expected to occur in the short term. Of these 23 cities, more than half (15) indicate that they currently face serious to extremely serious levels of risk. Temperature changes (e.g. more hot days), more intense rainfall, increased severity of storms and floods, and rising sea level are the most frequently mentioned. Some cities describe compounding factors that may worsen the physical effects of climate change in the city.

For instance, many port cities mentioned that their low lying topographies in combination with dense populations (Sydney, Jakarta, Dhaka, Lagos, Rotterdam) and rising sea levels, flooding and increased storm surges put them at greater risk for adverse impacts on urban infrastructure, citizens and local businesses.

C40 city governments are conducting local climate change risk assessments To fully understand the effects of climate change and anticipated risks, many C40 cities are conducting climate change impact and vulnerability assessments. 35 responding cities identify or are in the process of identifying the specific risks they face from climate change. The scope of these assessments generally covers the city as a whole, while sometimes focusing on certain economic sectors (such as industry, commerce, leisure, agriculture) or city functions (such as transport, infrastructure, public services, public health, urban parks). Portland, for instance, is currently undertaking a vulnerability assessment and working to “evaluate the extent to which Portland’s natural, built, and human systems are resilient across a variety of scenarios.” Caracas is “establishing climate scenarios in Venezuela by 2060 by using simulation models of the UK UKTR Meteorological Office and CCC-EQ of the Canadian Center for Climate Modeling and Analysis.”

Fig. 29: Cities that said they were exposed to significant physical risks from climate change (% of respondents)

2% 0 Yes No 25 Don’t know Number of responding cities (42) 26 © 2011 Carbon Disclosure Project 50 75

93% 5% 100

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