Time horizon


The impact of climate change will be different when considering a shorter or longer time horizon. One can choose to, for example, focus on effects occurring in the coming years, or to prevent the impacts foreseen for the 22nd century to happen. This step therefore defines the time horizon that is being used as a starting point for addressing climate impacts.


The apparent problem with regards to climate adaptation should be defined.


A time horizon on which to focus the adaptation strategy and a description of the reasons for this horizon.


Insight in the following subjects might help in determining the time horizon;

Care should be taken that the chosen time frame is certain to meet with approval from all major stakeholders. If uncertain, use a group decision process to arrive at a broadly supported decision.



The Paris Climate Action Plan (adopted in March 2018) follows an approach called “Three milestones, One urgent need”. It sets:

  1. a vision for 2050 – because building resilience and transforming our energy and food systems, in Paris and at all larger scales, is a long-term process and because economic actors need a strong and consistent signal in order to include this transformation in their own development
  2. an operational action plan for 2020-2030– because this is the time to implement ambitious measures in order to reach the 2050 vision (with some targets for 2030)
  3. and complementary acceleration measures to be taken by 2020 – because a boost is necessary given the urgent need for energy transition, as reminded for example by the “Deadline 2020” report published by C40 in 2016 .

Supporting tools and methods

No tools or methods found to support this step.