Coastal Risk Management Hanöbukten
Project Duration
January 2017
January 2019
Research Priority Area
Environmental Impact of Maritime Activities
Project Website

Ocean and coastal resources are essential for the survival of many species, as well as for nations’ economies, food security, health and culture. The combined effects of human activity and climate change are pushing many coastal areas to their tipping point. Once this point is reached any changes are irreversible.

A number of policies have emerged in order to regulate different sectors and challenges regarding ocean and coastal governance. The 5th Assessment from the International Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) and recent research show that these policies fail to be implemented at the local level. There is a need for new governance structures, involving and connecting local stakeholders (such as the private sector, academia, authorities, non-governmental-organizations and coastal habitants) and local needs thus being able to change current destructive practices and implement sustainable goals. The goals from the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in focus for this project are: Goal 3 Good health and well-being, Goal 6 Clean water and sanitation, Goal 9 Industry, innovation and infrastructure, Goal 11 Sustainable Cities and Communities, Goal 13 Climate Action, Goal 14 Life below Water, and Goal 17 Partnerships for the Goals.

Hanöbukten is a bay in the south-east coast of Sweden (in the Baltic Sea) which is dealing with several risks related to ocean and coastal resources and changes in the environment. Examples of the risks are water pollution, climate change, beach erosion, loss of biodiversity and loss of important coastal businesses, as well as cultural heritage. Other risks in the area are related to lack of resources,  correct data, poor management and capacity-building. The complexity of dealing with several risks at the same time, and the need to interlink and analyze the risks all together, as well as to involve a wider range of local stakeholders for taking local actions, will be addressed in this project.

The project aims to use the process from the existing community-based management model from Canada, the Atlantic Coastal Action Program (ACAP), and their network to further strengthen the existing collaboration node in Skåne, Sweden, with particular emphasis on involving the private sector and innovative solutions.The outcome will generate a new network platform between coastal communities in Sweden and in Canada, a comprehensive coastal risk management plan for the region in the south of Sweden (Hanöbukten) and stronger partnership and links to the private sector and their suggestions to solutions for addressing the coastal risks. The purpose of the project is to become a showcase  in the Baltic Sea for bottom-up management and generate concrete solutions on how to faster and more effective address coastal risk and the lack of local implementation and stakeholder involvement.



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Principal Investigator
Larry Hildebrand
WMU Adjunct Professor and Special Advisor for the WMU-Sasakawa Global Ocean Institute
Co-principal investigator
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Project Officer
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