Climate Change Effects on Malta’s Blue Economy Sectors

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

The Soclimpact project has come to an end with the final conference First European Island Summit on Climate Change. It provided downscaled climate projections for Malta’s Blue Economy Sectors which can be used by local stakeholders, researchers, and policymakers to further work on climate change related projects and adapt the sector to climate change risks, even beyond the project lifetime.

The SOCLIMPACT project aimed to help fill some of the knowledge gaps that still hinder the design of custom-tailored climate adaptation options and the emergence of fast growth opportunities. Among the sectors of relevance to insular economies that are exposed to climate change, SOCLIMPACT selected Maritime Transport, Tourism, Energy and Aquaculture for its sector-specific study of climate-change-related impacts in EU islands. Within the consortium of 24 partners, AquaBioTech Group from Malta is the Island Focal Point for the Maltese Islands and the co-chair of the sector modelling team for aquaculture.

This month, the SOCLIMPACT project came to an end after 40 months of intensive work. The outcomes of the research work in each island were achieved with the following sequence:

  • Downscaled projections of climate hazards (sea level rise, floods, beach loss, seagrass evolution, fire danger, extreme temperatures, infectious disease outbreaks, water temperature, among others). More information here.
  •  An iterative risk assessment, aiming not only to evaluate the risk of climate change, but also to monitor the risk components (vulnerability, exposure) evolving with time and respond to human interventions. More information here.
  •  The potential economic impacts on four blue economy sectors, considering specific hazards and risks. Different methodologies were used for each sector, including non-market evaluation of adaptation policies. More information here.

The socio-economic implications for the islands’ systems by the application of General Equilibrium Analysis. Changes in mean temperature, sea level and precipitation rates have been used as inputs to assess the effects on 14 sectors of economic activity, GDP, consumption, investments, and employment. More information here.

· The co-analysis and ranking, with regional stakeholders, produced alternative adaptation pathways for the islands that are framed by the geographic and socio-economic conditions. They defined the future scenario of each island, as well as specific limits and obstacles that constrain their avenue to be more resilient territories. More information here.

Furthermore, the SOCLIMPACT project developed the REIS platform. It proposes solutions to the European island territories and offers a huge opportunity for all islands to intensively discuss and to establish a benchmark for Adaptation and Blue Growth. The platform has as its central space the “Adaptation Support Tool for Islands” that projects to the physical impacts and socioeconomic consequences of climate change in the blue economy of the islands. More information here.

The final conference of the project “First European Island Summit on Climate Change” was held on March 23rd, 2021. It represented the most important event organised by the project where academics, high-level representatives of EU islands and outermost regions and panelists of the European Commission analysed co-benefits and time-led pathways for adaptation that build more resilient archipelagos.

AquaBioTech Group organized the Online Workshop “Capacity Building Workshop on Climate Change Projects in Malta”. The event presented the outcomes of the climate change adaptation support from the SOCLIMPACT project, and introduced possibilities and ideas for future climate change related projects and collaborations in Malta. The participants were from the fields of aquaculture, tourism, energy, and maritime transport as well as climate change and the environment. During the workshop, the guest speaker from The Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology (MCAST) introduced the EIT Climate-KIC Malta Hub which is a part of an EU-wide knowledge and innovation community. The Hub is promoting programmes to fight climate change through innovation, community engagement and education especially in blue economy sectors. Follow the work here.

Those who are interested in the full report of the outcomes for Malta, please contact this email address: info@aquabt.com

Please view the orriginal press release attached here below. 

Further Information: External Link
Attachment: External Link