Publications Adaptation

No adaptation without operational requirements and human resources

Increasingly frequent heat waves, long droughts, coastal erosion and changing flood risks are all impacts of climate change that will be problematic for the French economy and society. How detrimental this impact will be, will largely depend on what we have anticipated. If we organise ourselves well, we will be able to ensure we make the best decisions for a collective management of risks, development and economic choices, better suited to changing climates. However, regardless of whether we choose to reduce the exposure and vulnerability of populations, facilities and activities upstream or accept an increased share of risk, we must be prepared. 


This publication is only available in French


Today we are not ready. There is a French national strategy for adaptation to climate change and a National Plan for Adaptation to Climate Change (PNACC2). However, having plans is of course not enough to guarantee the effectiveness and even less the efficiency of an adaptation policy. What this Climate Brief emphasises is that, as obvious as it may seem, if we want to rise to this challenge, we must also give ourselves the means to make these documents operational and to implement this policy. There are 2 prerequisites for this: 


  • The various government departments must be able to justify how each public policy concerned contributes to reducing the country’s vulnerability. These policies are clearly identified in the PNACC2 and include environmental, agricultural, economic and international policies, as policies. Analysis of the environmental assessment of the State budget, as well as a review of the climate action plans submitted by the various ministries clearly demonstrate that this has not yet been accomplished. 
  • The first prerequisite is to demand that organisations in a position to implement adaptation report and be held accountable for the way in which they integrate the subject into each of their projects and each of their long-term decisions. This seems essential when public money is mobilised. 


Public project owners or infrastructure managers, for example in the transport sector, must also be able to demonstrate how they are integrating climate change into their investments. It is necessary to check for example, how each new school-building effectively takes into account summer comfort of students to ensure that the next generation of schoolchildren can continue to attend classes in May and June in complete safety. 


The second prerequisite is to mobilise the resources, especially human resources, necessary at both the national and sub-national levels, to lead and monitor the adaptation. Adaptation is first and foremost a matter of smart-design and it must consider the realities at a local level. It requires communication, coordination and the ability to be able to take into account what scientists teach us when designing public policies or development projects. This Climate Brief highlights the need to:


  • Strengthen the human resources available to the State’s departments and operators concerned with adaptation in order to address this issue;
  • Provide visibility on the resources available to those responsible for sub-national adaptation dynamics in order to operate in the long term;
  • Guarantee that the engineering offer to local authorities includes adaptation;
  • Accompany the demands made of infrastructure managers and public operators with a dedicated budget and/or financing facilities so that they can conduct the necessary analyses and set up adaptation management processes. 


Once these two prerequisites have been met, we can begin to put the various adaptation options on the table, compare their costs and discuss, collectively, the level of risk we are willing to accept and the most desirable responses. Then we can begin to talk seriously about the associated investment needs.


No adaptation without operational requirements and human resources Download
I4CE Contacts
Senior Project Manager – Adaptation and Local authorities Email
Morgane NICOL
Morgane NICOL
Program Director – Territories Email
To learn more
  • 03/24/2023 Foreword of the week
    International Day of Forests: carbon certification, adaptation and carbon sink

    This week, for the International Day of Forests, I4CE offers you an overview of the forestry issues that are being debated in France and in Brussels. In our newsletter, you will discover a new blog post by Julia Grimault on European carbon certification and our latest analyses on the adaptation of French forests to climate change, the French carbon sink and the wood industry. 

  • 11/03/2022
    Ensuring sufficient means to adapt to climate change consequences in France: What are the costs?

    This study is a contribution to the French public debate. It aims at supporting the acceleration and concretization of climate change adaptation initiatives in this country. The study reviews 11 adaptation challenges such as the strengthening of civil protection, the reshaping of coastal areas or the protection of water resources. For each challenge, the study presents national budgetary decisions ready to make in the next Finance Bill that would complement existing actions and cost elements to feed the required arbitrations yet to be made.  

  • 11/25/2021
    Challenges to implementing adaptation on the ground- 5 case-studies in France

    In order to understand what public financial institutions can do, I4CE and Ramboll have analyzed 5 territorial projects, from the Vosges to the Dordogne, which are trying to meet the challenge of adaptation. Beyond their differences, each of the cases studied shows that adaptation requires, above all, dedicating time and resources to change the way projects are designed and carried out.

See all publications
Press contact Amélie FRITZ Head of Communication and press relations Email
Subscribe to our mailing list :
I register !
Subscribe to our newsletter
Once a week, receive all the information on climate economics
I register !