Glasgow City Region Adaptation Strategy - report

Foreword: COVID-19, climate change and COP26 – leading a regional just, green recovery

The COVID-19 pandemic took hold halfway through the production of Climate Ready Clyde’s Adaptation Strategy. Before that, Glasgow City Region was already under pressure, with a rising and moving population and increasing pressure on nature. We are expecting an additional 51,000 people to live here by 2043, whilst 49% fewer animal and plant species live here than in 1970. COVID-19 comes as a major health, social and economic shock on top of this. In Glasgow City Region, 217,000 staff were furloughed, with 38,000 additional people claiming some form of unemployment benefit.

But whilst the restrictions, lockdown and emergency response have been very difficult for everyone in Glasgow City Region and beyond, it also offered a glimpse of something else: the potential for a very different way of life. As society slowed down, nature returned, communities and businesses came together in pursuit of shared goals, and national and local governments made rapid shifts in the interest of health and well-being. The pandemic may possibly be with us for years to come. And just like we were warned of the current health crisis, the risks from climate change have not gone away. They have the potential to be just as disruptive, if not more so. Calls for greater climate action have been replaced with louder ones for a green, just, economic recovery, which builds our resilience to a wider range of shocks and stresses. As the world works through the pandemic, and begins to recover and restart, we are at something of a unique moment. A moment with a window for significant change and an opportunity to listen to the views of scientists for our citizens and future generations. Replicating global economic recovery approaches has not always worked well for Glasgow City Region, resulting in much longer recoveries than other cities around the UK. And our region’s history of deindustrialization shows us only too well the results of catastrophic, unplanned (and ultimately unmanaged) economic change. As Glasgow City Region prepares to host world leaders for the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in 2021, all eyes are on the steps we take next. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has said that the current crisis is an unprecedented wake-up call and that we need to turn the recovery into a real opportunity to do things right for the future. We wholeheartedly agree. With adaptation and resilience, finance and nature- based solutions all key themes of the conference, there is no better time to demonstrate their potential for transforming the world. So, this Strategy offers a different approach – a path to a fairer future – one that improves the security for all in Glasgow City Region, as well as for wider Scotland, creating fairer, more inclusive places, resilient to climate impacts. It sets out 11 interventions, supported by our innovative Resilient Regions: Clyde Rebuilt project that will collectively deliver the social, cultural, economic, environmental and democratic renewal and change necessary to ensure everyone in Glasgow City Region can flourish in our future climate. It draws strength from our people, our communities and our businesses, and looks to harness our skills, innovation


Made with FlippingBook - professional solution for displaying marketing and sales documents online