REGIONs4CLIMATE / Resilient Regions / Basque Country
Location: South of Europe, at the eastern end of the Cantabrian Sea, bordering France
Population: 2.2 million
Area: 7,234 km2
Population density: 304 inhabitants per km2
Region-important activities: The Basque Country is a wealthy, highly industrialised and densely populated region which produces 0.5% of the total GHG emissions of the European Union. The natural heritage is a key element of the Basque economy and culture; with 23% of its surface protected, it has a close relationship with fisheries, livestock and agriculture.
About the region: Due to its location, close to the Pyrenees and the Cantabrian Sea, it is a very diverse region and a hotspot for biodiversity with a variety of ecosystems. Despite being relatively small, it represents two climatic bioregions: the Atlantic and Mediterranean.
Challenges and solutions
Due to the effects of climate change, locations near coats have become more vulnerable to rising sea levels, coastal erosion and storm surges, risking local homes and populations. Its sea level is expected to increase between 0.45-0.8cm by 2100, which, combined with the fact that 75% of the population lives in coastal areas, makes it one of the biggest adaptation challenges for the Basque Country.
Txingudi Bay is located in a transboundary conurbation of 95,000 inhabitants in the Bidasoa estuary located on the border with France. It is a highly anthropised area of unique marshes that is highly exposed to the rising sea level and its related impacts. Restoring the original marshland in Txingudi Bay can improve the capacity for resilience against the effects of climate change and have a positive impact on the biodiversity of the area. In total, 5.5 hectares of land will be recovered.