Norway leads record-breaking climate project

20 July 2022

The EU is now giving NOK 270 million to a research project that will improve the districts’ ability to deal with climate change. The Resist climate project is led by SINTEF, and is the largest EU award for a Norwegian-led climate project ever.

“We are both happy and proud that the RESIST project is realized. We see this as a great recognition of the expertise and experience we have gained through, among other things, our cooperation with Vesterålen. The digital model will give stakeholders the opportunity to make more informed and precise decisions and estimate the impact of these decisions,” says Odd Are Svensen, Head of Research at SINTEF.

The purpose of Resist is to use technology, innovation and science to develop regions that will remain sustainable in the face of climate change. This will be done by conducting large-scale trials of innovations for climate adaptation in 12 regions and transferring knowledge and innovative solutions between the regions. The project has a total budget of EUR 26.6 million, approximately NOK 270 million, and is a joint project with 56 partners from the EU, Norway and Ukraine over a five-year period.

“The project is an important contribution to SINTEF’s strategy to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals and will help local communities and businesses better meet climate change. The project is an example of how SINTEF can contribute digital technology that can be used for change and decision support to reduce the consequences of climate change,” says Morten Dalsmo, Executive Vice President at SINTEF.

Vesterålen becomes spearhead

Norwegian partners will play a key role in RESIST, and Vesterålen is one of the 12 regions. RESIST will build on the work in GaiaVesterålen, a research initiative that aims to create more environmentally friendly and sustainable communities. Together with SINTEF, actors in Vesterålen have for several years worked with technology development, as well as mobilization of the local community to adapt to climate change.

“This is fantastic news and will have a big impact on Vesterålen. As a coastal municipality, Vesterålen is largely dependent on the sea in terms of both fisheries and tourism. Through RESIST, Vesterålen will take part in an important project that can both say something about and come up with solutions to the climate challenges of the future,” says Hugo Jacobsen, head of vesterålen regional council.

Vesterålen Regional Council is a partner in RESIST, together with GaiaVesterålen/Lofotr Næringsdrift AS and Andfjord Salmon AS.

“We at Andfjord Salmon are very pleased to be part of this project. As a local industry player in Vesterålen, where the goal is strongly rooted in sustainability, we want to contribute to collecting and sharing important data to accommodate future climate change. We will be part of the solution to the green shift,” says Stig Pettersen, project manager at Andfjord Salmon.

RESIST will have a major impact on the local community in Vesterålen going forward. The GaiaVesterålen platform will be further developed to showcase the impact of climate change and help the local community, both private and public sectors, as well as households become more environmentally friendly and endorse the environmental contract that is central to GaiaVesterålen.

“We have always lived off and with nature and we have to make sure that we can do that in the future as well, because the world is changing. I think regions like Vesterålen have an important role to play in stopping climate change, men also in spreading knowledge about climate adaptation. Through Resist, we will develop a tool that can help us plan better for a changed climate in the future,” says Ane Høyem, project manager at GaiaVesterålen.

The RESIST project has received EU funding through the Horizon Europe programme’s “EU Mission Adaptation to Climate Change”. This is one of the first projects from this programme, and is one of the largest projects funded by the Horizon programme, which is led by a Norwegian partner.

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