Case Studies

Panel Discussions: In the afternoon of Day 1 and Day 2 of the Conference, all participants will reconvene in the plenary for a panel discussion. The main goal of the panel discussion is to use case studies to provide participants with a more tangible and concise understanding of the implementation of a Nexus Approach. In particular, it should take up the more theoretical discussion of the Keynote speech and synthesize the more specific discussions in the parallel sessions through examples. This will be achieved by presenting and discussing a set three of case studies related to one of the main themes (Multifunctional Land-Use Systems / Resources Management in Resilient Cities), which together should provide a comprehensive example how a Nexus Approach can be developed and (at least partly) implemented in different regional and political context. Two experts representing respectively the scientific/monitoring and governance/implementation perspectives will be asked to comment on the presentations and involved in the further discussion.


Regional Climate Change Adaptation Programme for the Dresden Region (REGKLAM)

Presenter: Christian Korndörfer, Head of Environmental Office, City of Dresden

Brief Description: In the years to come Dresden and its surroundings will have to deal with the direct and indirect impacts of climate change. These are expected to bring challenges to practically all areas of public and private life. Between 2008 and 2013 a large consortium of regional actors from politics, administration, business and science therefore placed the city and region of Dresden at the heart of wide-ranging investigations.

Within the framework of the REGKLAM project (full title: “Development and Testing of an Integrated Regional Climate Change Adaption Programme for the Model Region Dresden”), these actors designed strategies to better cope with the regional impact of climate change, addressing components of the Dresden Nexus approach in an integrative manner. Strategic issues of the project were urban development, green spaces and buildings, water supply and waste water disposal, agriculture and forestry, regional economy, and nature protection. Regional climate change not only carries a risk but also offers opportunities to Dresden and its surroundings. A major goal of REGKLAM thus has been to pinpoint and exploit these opportunities while reducing or indeed avoiding risks.

REGKLAM was intended to help the Dresden region to become a leading role model of regional adaption to climate change. The project was one of seven model projects in Germany funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research within the framework of the KLIMZUG programme, which supported Germany’s regions to develop and implement tailor-made measures of adaptation to climate change. REGKLAM involved a wide range of stakeholders and provides solutions which help approaching various SDGs, mainly SDG 6, 11, 13, 15 and 17, but also 3, 7, 8, 9 and 12.

Photo: Petra Knothe

Photo: Petra Knothe


Use of treated wastewater and sewage sludge in Ouardanine: Current status and future aspirations

Presenter: Olfa Mahjoub, Associate Professor in Agricultural Sciences and Researcher in Water Quality and Reuse, National Research Institute for Rural Engineering, Water, and Forestry (INRGREF), TUNISIA

Brief Description: The use of treated wastewater for enhancing agricultural production, provides a practical example of adopting a water-soil-waste nexus approach and of closing rural-urban material cycles. In Tunisia, irrigated agriculture and promotion of treated wastewater (TWW) use are part of the water policy to guarantee food security in fragile areas. The region of Ouardanine, Center-East of Tunisia, was lacking water resources of acceptable quality and suffering the low fertility of the soil (sandy with low organic matter content). Farmers were aware that the use of TWW and sewage sludge (SS) produced in the nearby wastewater treatment plant would improve soil quality, increase yield, diversify agricultural production, and guarantee the economic and social wealth in the region if optimally used. Reuse of TWW for the irrigation of fruit trees to produce marketable fruits and forage for livestock has completely changed the profile of the region in the time span of 25 years. SS is used with precaution instead of manure.

The project is supported and jointly managed by the Water Users’ Association (as NGO) and the Ministry of Agriculture, Water Resources and Fishery at the regional and central levels. It addresses various SDGs, namely SDG 1, 2, 6, 8, 11, 12, 15, and 17.

Photo: Olfa Mahjoub

Photo: Olfa Mahjoub

Czech Republic

Stakeholder Participation and Implementation of Climate Change Adaptation Strategies in Czech Cities

Presenter: David Vačkář, Head of the Department of Human Dimensions of Global Change, Global Change Research Institute (CzechGlobe), Czech Academy of Sciences

Brief Description: The development of adaptation strategies to climate change was initiated in three pilot cities in the Czech Republic (Prague, Brno, Pilsen) under the UrbanAdapt Project (Development of Urban Adaptation Strategies Using Ecosystem-Based Approaches to Adaptation). The aim is to propose and evaluate suitable adaptation measures and actions. This is done with the support of ecosystem-based approaches based on climate change vulnerability assessment. In collaboration with stakeholders, relevant adaptation measures are identified, and preferred measures in terms of the costs and benefits are evaluated. Finally, adaptation strategies are designed and initiated.

During a two-year period, pilot cities launched adaptation cycles leading to the adaptation strategies. Currently, strategical documents are being discussed and implemented. An important component of the UrbanAdapt project is the inclusion of green and blue infrastructure as well as ecosystem services in the adaptation cycle and individual adaptation measures. It mainly addresses measures referring to water and land-use management.

UrbanAdapt incorporated a wide range of stakeholders who participated in the process of preparing strategies, vulnerability assessment, participatory sessions, information support, testing different approaches, and so on. The case study presents the process of stakeholder participation and selected aspects of implementation of climate change adaptation strategies in cities. The project outcomes will help achieve various SDGs, mainly SDG 11, 13, and 15.


China China

Multifunctional approach to balance the impacts of soil erosion control and water yield reduction by large scale afforestation in the dry Loess Plateau Region of Northwest China

Presenter: Yanhui Wang, Chinese Academy of Forestry

Brief Description: Dryland areas include arid, semi-arid and semi-humid areas; they occupy about 41% of the global land surface and are often sensitive and prone to land use changes because of the shortage of water and vegetation cover. The Loess Plateau region in Northwest China is one of such regions. Centuries of overuse or improper management resulted in degenerated ecosystems, severe soil erosion and desertification, and thus poor local economy. To control erosion, various large-scale soil conservation programs have been implemented by the central government since the 1950s, especially the afforestation within the Grain for Green Project since 1999,. These programs have been quite successful in terms of restoring forest/vegetation cover and reducing soil erosion, but as adverse effects they reduced the water yield, aggravated the regional water supply scarcity and sustainable development. The predicted climate change of warming-up has been exacerbating this situation. Thus, a more water-saving forestry planning and forest management are urgently required to balance the competing service demands of soil erosion control and water supply through an approach of multifunctional land use in the Loess Plateau region.

To this end, it will be discussed how the water yield is affected by afforestation, and how the right forestry development planning and forest management practice may help to maintain and improve the balanced use of water and soil resources in dryland areas. Moreover, it will be shown to what extent the existing (new) policies enable a more sustainable management of natural environmental resources. Finally, the needs towards successful implementation in terms of research and policy will be discussed. This involves more effective and more comprehensive participation of stakeholders beyond the government and local farmers. This case study addresses key aspects for achieving SDG 1, 2, 6, 7, 12, 13 and 15.

Severe soil erosion and sparse vegetation on the Loess Plateau (Photo: Yanhui Wang)

Severe soil erosion and sparse vegetation on the Loess Plateau (Photo: Yanhui Wang)

Large scale afforestation on the loess Plateau (Photo: Yanhui Wang)

Large scale afforestation on the loess Plateau (Photo: Yanhui Wang)

30-years-old popular trees with very low growth on dry site with dried soil layer (Photo: Yanhui Wang)

30-years-old popular trees with very low growth on dry site with dried soil layer (Photo: Yanhui Wang)

Viet Nam

Management of Mineral Resource Extraction in Hoa Binh Province – a Contribution to Sustainable Development

Presenter: Ngo Trung Hai, General Director, Vietnam Institute for Urban and Rural Planning (VIUP)

Brief Description: The growth and the associated resources demand of Megacities is one of the major global trends challenging sustainable development. One important aspect of urbanization, mineral resource extraction for building activities, is addressed in a joint German-Vietnamese project in applied science of spatial development: MAREX; supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Ministry of Science and Technology of Vietnam.

Scientific investigations are directed on the building industry based on local finite resources, taking into consideration mainly the activities in the field of extraction and processing of aggregates (sand, gravel, stone), but also reflecting transport, the construction sector as well as potential recycling of construction and demolition waste. The Metropolitan region of Hanoi and Hoa Binh Province serve as a comprehensive model basis for wider application within and outside of Vietnam.

Regardless of a lot of international declarations and guidelines addressing the sustainable extraction of construction materials, promoted by the UN, non-governmental organisations, the national states and also voluntary commitments of the extractive industry, the implementation is weak in most developing countries like Viet Nam. The state of the art is characterized by less compliance with environmental and social standards, less contribution to local economic wealth, deficits in transparency of licensing processes, as well as bad working conditions of the miners.

Project activities consider environmental, social and economic indicators and involve regional stakeholders from various administrative levels, mining companies and the affected people. With its comprehensive approach MAREX contributes to solutions towards SDGs 6, 8, 11, 12 and 15.

Stone mining in Hoa Binh Province/Viet Nam (Photo: P. Wirth/IOER)

Stone mining in Hoa Binh Province/Viet Nam (Photo: P. Wirth/IOER)


Payment for Ecosystem Services as a Catalyst for Sustainable Land Management in Sasumua Catchment, Kenya

Presenter: John M. Gathenya, Jomo Kenyatta University

Brief Description: Sasumua is a humid, 107 km2 catchment in Kenya which represents a Multifunctional Land-use System: it includes a national park, forest reserve, intensive agriculture and water supply reservoir (16 million m3) that serves 15% of Nairobi City water requirements. Under the KAPSLM project, a Payment for Ecosystem Services (KAPSLM-PES) pilot project was initiated in June 2015 to promote sustainable land management practices (SLMP) that would lead to reduced soil erosion and reservoir sedimentation, improved water quality, higher agricultural productivity and household incomes. Three private companies were contracted to provide technical advice and training to farmers who were organized into three value chains with different common interest groups namely: fruit and vegetables (potato, tree tomato, strawberry), dairy and meat (cow, goat, poultry), and natural resource management (agroforestry, bee-keeping, fish farming). For every registered farmer, a Land Management Plan (LMP) was drawn indicating responsibilities and timelines for implementation of recommended SLM practices. The project supported farmers with some of the needed inputs such as grass splits and cash to cover a third of the labour costs.

After one year, about 1000 farmers joined the PES project under one or more CIGs. A total of 79101 m of drainage and retention ditches, 28662 m of grass strips, 320278 napier/vertiver grass splits, 38962 agroforestry trees, 274 m of riverine protection, 173 bee-hives and 8 fish ponds were implemented. Besides the farmers’ association, respective ministries and governmental agencies and authorities were involved. A study is being done to estimate the impact of this adoption of SLM practices on soil erosion, sedimentation and water quality. By its integrative approach, the project outcomes are relevant for achieving SDG 2, 6, 7, 8, 12 and 15.

Field demonstrations by the extension service providers (Photo: John M. Gathenya)

Field demonstrations by the extension service providers (Photo: John M. Gathenya)

Newly established vetiver grass (Photo: John M. Gathenya)

Newly established vetiver grass (Photo: John M. Gathenya)

A retention ditch  (Photo: John M. Gathenya; cropped)

A retention ditch (Photo: John M. Gathenya; cropped)