The changing global climate resulting in an increase in extreme weather impacts has an effect on the social, economic and environmental qualities of towns and cities all over Europe. Warmer, wetter, winters and hotter, drier summers create a social, environmental and economic impact on all urban dwellers and dwellings and it is often the most vulnerable in society who are affected adversely.

Even under the most optimistic greenhouse gas reduction scenario the on-going process of climate change cannot be stopped. These impacts create new hazards and vulnerabilities putting the citizens´ quality of life and health at risk, particularly for the growing number of the elderly. Applicable knowledge from science and practice is necessary for decision making, even though uncertainties remain. However, the integration of scientific findings into urban development and planning practice has not yet taken place and fixed planning procedures lack both innovative approaches and adequate knowledge to integrate effective climate change adaptation measures into planning and construction practice.