Climate change and the loss of biodiversity are two closely intertwined global crises that mutually influence each other and must be collectively addressed. Through nature-based solutions, climate protection and climate adaptation can be connected with the preservation of biodiversity and ecosystems. Such nature-based solutions comprise, for example, the protection and restoration of wetlands, including rivers with their floodplains and coastlines. These not only provide habitats for numerous animal and plant species but also sequester carbon, contribute to flood and coastal protection, and provide many other ecosystem services.
Since 2011, the German Agency for Nature Protection BfN, in cooperation with the European Network of Heads of Nature Conservation Agencies (ENCA-Network), has been organizing a conference series titled "European Conference on Biodiversity and Climate Change." In this series, selected topical areas related to biodiversity and climate change are discussed and further developed with European scientists, policy advisors, and practitioners. Besides the professional exchange and networking opportunities for relevant experts on the European level, it also aims to strengthen the science-policy-practice interface, as well as the policy relevance and practical application of the results. An overarching goal of the conference series is to contribute to the promoted integration and joint addressing of biodiversity conservation and climate change on the European level.
Due to their significance and relevance regarding both, biodiversity and climate change, the fifth conference in the series addresses the role of wetlands, specifically riverine and coastal wetlands, in the context of climate change mitigation and adaptation as well as of the conservation of biodiversity. In exchange with European experts from science, politics and practice, this topic is to be further developed together by interactively formulating and recording recommendations for action for science, policy and practice. Adelphi is responsible for the practical organisation of the conference. In close collaboration with BfN and partners Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, an interesting programme and thematical exchange has been organised which can feed into specific ENCA recommendations and a scientific publication.