Benidorm, on the path of adaptation to climate change

The new plan will be in line with the SDGs, the 2030 Agenda and the sustainability plans already implemented
Mónica Gómez, Tóni Pérez and Jorge Olcina.
Mónica Gómez, Tóni Pérez and Jorge Olcina.

At the COP 25 Climate Summit held in Madrid last December, Benidorm announced the development of its Climate Change Adaptation Plan. The mayor, Toni Pérez, did it at a thematic table on Smart Tourist Destinations, in the so-called ‘Green Zone’ of the international convention, being the first municipality to do so.

The Municipal Plan for Adaptation to climate change, the mayor announced then, was going to be directed and tutored by the professor of Regional Geographic Analysis Jorge Olcina, director of the Laboratory of Climatology at the University of Alicante, and one of the most authoritative voices in the matter.

This morning, Professor Olcina finalized the details of the plan in a meeting of his team with Mayor Toni Pérez, the Councilor for the Environment and Beaches, Mónica Gómez, and the municipal engineer, Vicente Mayor.

The mayor, in conclusion. has highlighted that "Benidorm never abandoned the idea" and after an impass caused by the lock down and the state of alarm, with a view to its implementation, today it has specified the phases of development of the Plan that will focus on a specific calendar for the analysis of weather situations and atmospheric phenomena, the reality of the municipal area, the coastal and green strips, the modeling of future processes and the determination of their impact on economic sectors and the city as a whole, "detecting the points of risk caused by the trend towards a more irregular climate and with intensification processes ”, highlighted Professor Olcina.

At the meeting, the parties agreed on the suitability of analyzing specific situations in the future and, as specified by the mayor, "develop adaptation measures", as well as the preparation of "proposals for action and economic valuation of them so that Benidorm can raise them, undertake them and continue in the line of leadership in sustainability issues ”, Pérez has assured that“ sustainability is part of the city's DNA from its configuration as a vertical city ”; a sustainability in which progress is gradually made at all levels of action.

For Toni Pérez, after the meeting and the commitments reached, "the plan that we designed for Benidorm is broader and more complex than the one recommended by the future law, because Benidorm already has many of the proposals made". If until now there has been talk of mitigation, the novelty of the plan, highlighted the mayor and Professor Olcina agreed, "will be the adaptation proposals to reinforce the resilient nature of the city and overcome future climatic situations."

In January 2021 a preview of the Plan will be exhibited, which will have its official presentation at the end of March, with the celebration of World Climate Day, and thereafter, it will become a fundamental document of government action for the city of Benidorm, thinking about its future.

Toni Pérez stressed that with this planning "Benidorm will develop a complete diagnosis and analysis with which it will propose adaptation proposals agreed with all sectors".

The mayor concluded by stating that “Benidorm will be the first municipality in Spain to have a plan of these characteristics; a scalable plan that will position us and promote us ”. It is, Pérez insisted, "a plan with which" Benidorm will complete the cycle of its actions because from now on it will point out the climatic conditions and their adaptation to the future, under the key of sustainability. "