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Geoscientist Online

Climate Change Adaptation in Practice, by Schmidt-Thome and Klein

Following the uyrecent publication by the IPCC of their assessment of climate change impacts, adaptation and vulnerability, this is a topical publication. Based on the results of the project Climate Change: Impacts, Costs and Adaptation in the Baltic Sea Region (BaltCICA), much of the book centres around case studies from this geographical region that includes Denmark, Finland, Latvia, Germany, Lithuania, Norway and Estonia.

The first chapter, Communicating Climate Change Adaptation, briefly highlights the importance of communication between scientists and other stakeholders; however most of the chapter is devoted to introducing the book and making some general comments about the BaltCICA project. Given the broad range of stakeholders that may utilise this book, the discussion of communication could have been extended and a glossary of acronyms and key words included at this stage. This would have aided the cross-disciplinary communication emphasised as being important.

The bulk of the book (seventeen out of the remaining twenty one chapters) is devoted to the Baltic case studies. These chapters cover a diverse range of topics including participatory approaches, sea level change, coastal protection, urban planning, flood adaptation, groundwater resources, mussel farming and tourism. A range of social and physical science tools are also used within these chapters. The diversity of topics and tools means that this book has the potential to be of interest to a much wider audience than those working in the Baltic. Many of the case studies are written in such a way that it is feasible for scientists, planners and policy makers already working in this field to extract key lessons and apply them in other locations.

At the end of the book, there are four chapters devoted to locations beyond Northern Europe, looking at case studies in Spain, Indonesia, Bangladesh and the Asia-Pacific region. These are a welcome addition to the text, bringing a range of insights from cultures and levels of economic development that are very different to those in the previous case studies. The overall balance and utility of the book would have been improved by including more of these, together with a strong concluding chapter contrasting the approaches being taken. 

This text is accessible and interesting, with a suite of well-constructed full colour diagrams. Available as a hardback and an e-book, this book is best suited to those who are already working in or studying climate change adaptation in a developed context.

Reviewed by Joel C. Gill

CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION IN PRACTICE: FROM STRATEGY DEVELOPMENT TO IMPLEMENTATION
EDITED BY PHILIPP SCHMIDT-THOMÉ and JOHANNES KLEIN, Published by: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd
2013 ISBN 978-0-470-97700-2 (Hbk), xi+327pp List price: £80, http://eu.wiley.com/