Natural England’s Character Area Climate Change Project commenced in 2007 to examine the vulnerability of the natural environment at a finer spatial scale. It began with a set of four pilot studies based around four National Character Areas (NCAs).
The project developed and used a methodology that used bioclimatic data, information from national experts, and workshops with external stakeholders to understand the relative importance and specific potential consequences of our climate risks in different places. Each study identifies a series of local responses to climate risks to help guide our own conservation work and to provide information that can help local communities make decisions for the natural environment in their area.
A second phase of studies commenced in 2009. The second phase built on the lessons learnt in the pilot studies and a revised methodology was developed, focusing on assessing vulnerability to climate change and increasing resilience of the natural environment.
Natural England has also considered important climate risks and responses in each of England’s 159 National Character Areas, as part of the new project to produce updated profiles for each area. This has been informed by the findings of work we have done to assess the vulnerability of the natural building on the detailed studies we have done in 8 National Character Areas.