We extend our heartfelt New Year wishes to our LIFE LATESTadapt Project team members, co-operation partners, and local communities! The beginning of year also provides an opportunity to reflect on the milestones we’ve achieved together so far.
The Project has been implemented since September 2022, and its first 1,5 years has been a journey of making preparatory steps for showcasing the power of nature-based and smart solutions to enhance urban climate resilience in Estonia and Latvia. Each Project Partner has played valuable role in conducting the preparatory and analytical tasks, summarised below.
In the field of Project management and communication, Project Partner teams were composed, Project visual identity elements were developed, website and Facebook page were created, joint Steering Group and Stakeholder Advisory Board held its first meeting, etc.
With regard to new nature-based solutions (NBS), Tallinn University of Technology (TalTech) and Riga Technical University (RTU ) composed, in co-operation with the partner municipalities, the technical descriptions for 8 demo sites – Viimsi, Haapsalu, Narva, Võru, Rakvere, Riga, Valmiera and Cesis. In parallel, Nordic Botanical conducted the literature review of the plant species suitable for native rain gardens, selected the species and tested the functioning of selected communities, designed and tested planting/seeding techniques. RTU gathered existing novel monitoring technologies and approaches about the effectiveness of nature-based solutions (and pointed out the knowledge gaps and research needs. Also, RTU prepared methodology and indicators for monitoring of the Project actions, as well as a monitoring plan describing the activities to be performed and their regularity.
In the topic of urban climate resilient planning, Baltic Environmental Forum Latvia (BEF Latvia) is leading the work for mapping of the green infrastructure in Riga, Cesis and Valmiera, by developing the methodology framework for mapping and planning, compiling a joint data hub, basemap and ecosystem service maps. Also, the key thematic Project event of 2023 co-organized by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development of Latvia (MoEPRD) and BEF Latvia – International Workshop on planning and operationalising urban green infrastructure and ecosystem service concepts – was held on 13-14.06.23 in Riga.
For raising awareness on adaptation to climate change effects, Baltic Environmental Forum Estonia (BEF Estonia) in cooperation with the partner municipalities mapped the local stakeholders and composed the action plan for their involvement. Thereafter, 6 stakeholder workshops were organised by local governments – in Haapsalu, Valmiera, Cesis, Riga, Võru, Narva – in which the proposed demo sites were presented to local inhabitants and organisations, and feedback was received from participants.
Based on this groundwork, in 2024 a large number of next tasks and events will be launched, among others, the preparation of construction project design for demo sites, training sessions on cost-efficiency, planning and management of NBS, including the development of Urban Greening Plans, student hackathons to generate new innovative ideas for NBS, and many more.
We look forward to continuing our collaborative journey in 2024, building on the successes of the past and exploring new avenues of innovation and sustainability!