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New innovative tactics to prevent disasters and address risks

Project is being implemented by a consortium with a lead partner City of Turku / Southwest Finland Emergency Services and Project Manager Miikka Toivonen has shared his insights about the project and its activities, outcomes, and progress.

As climate is becoming increasingly unpredictable and extreme, requiring new innovative tactics to prevent disasters, and address risks, it is becoming more evident each year that climate change is an emerging security threat, and a field in need of multi-level risk governance. The CASCADE project addresses climate change risk management at the local authority level in the Baltic Sea Region. It contributes to the objective “build up resilience and prevention towards emergencies and threats at the local level” of Policy Area Secure within the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, and it applies the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.


Better connection between local administrations and national civil protection authorities

CASCADE’s aim is to increase the connection between local administrations and national civil protection authorities and to create closer contacts between practitioners and climate change and/or risk management experts, creating mutual learning processes. One objective is also to improve the capacity to understand, assess, and treat current and future climate change related risks on the local level, focusing on the Baltic Sea Region conditions. Another goal is to increase practical risk management capabilities of local authorities, creating positive cascading effects through training civil protection experts and city planners, who will use the developed training material to enhance the capacity of urban communities.

To reach these goals and objectives CASCADE develops a comprehensive portfolio of risk management methodologies and tools related to climate change. To utilize this methodology established, CASCADE develops training courses in disaster risk reduction for civil protection experts and city planners. Thirdly, CASCADE initiates a region-wide policy dialogue on the UN Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction to form cross-sectorial cooperation between different levels of governance and for greater policy coherence on climate risk assessments.

- In my point of view, it is very important to cooperate with other countries in BSR. Cooperation between different authorities, city planners, climate change experts and NGO's provides us a heterogenous pool of actors who can combine different development ideas and aim for better future in BSR and beyond. This can also be challenge for the project but with efficient project management it is possible to bring all actors together. One challenge has been changes in the personnel in some organizations, but we have managed to solve them. In CASCADE project I have a very efficient and hardworking project partners and my work as a project manager has been quite easy. Good team is a key to success, Project Manager Toivonen sums up.

CASCADE kicked off in January 2019 and will run until mid-2021. In July 2019, the project was granted EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region’s Flagship Status under Policy Area Secure, which demonstrates the progress of the EUSBSR, and may serve as pilot example for desired action in a field.

Written by: Let's communicate! & Miikka Toivonen, CASCADE. The article was first published a blog post at the  website.

CASCADE Partners in Hamburg