RESIN Options for certification in urban climate adaptation
Peter Bosch (TNO)
As part of the H2020 RESIN project, this report investigates the need and opportunities for certification of adaptation products, services and processes. Certification is the independent quality assessment of a product, service or person. The resulting certificate demonstrates compliance with predefined standards. In addition to standardisation, certification is seen as a way to stimulate the uptake of technologies or practices that improve the climate resilience of European cities.
In urban climate adaptation only few standards exist, and certification examples are thus scarce. With regard to product certification, it seems that products with a high complexity, with many factors influencing performance (such as green roofs) or products that are able to prevent a lot of damage if properly manufactured (such as flood barriers), are the first for which standards have been developed and certification schemes have been introduced. With the expected increase of climate change impacts and possible damages, certification may spread to more product categories.
There are signs that standards and possibly certification schemes are increasingly developed for adaptation products, for instance for green facades. Also certification that is currently limited to one or two countries may spread to more European countries.
With regard to the certification of processes in urban climate adaptation, no evidence has been found of existing certification schemes. A systemic review reveals that possible processes where certification could have a value added include the production of vulnerability assessments, the development of adaptation strategies or heatwave emergency plans.
The development of process certification in urban adaptation will probably depend on legislative or financial requirements by (funding) authorities. Similar to national administrations, EU institutions such as the EIB, can play a role to encourage standardisation and certification in urban climate adaptation by recommending the use of standardised procedures and products.