Federal Council strategy for adaptation to climate change in Switzerland

Climate change is having an effect on the environment, the economy and industry in Switzerland as it is elsewhere. Actions to adapt to these effects are already needed now and will become more and more important in the future. The Federal Council’s strategy sets out the framework for a coordinated approach by the Federal Offices in adapting to climate change.

Goals, challenges and areas for action

On 2 March 2012, the Federal Council adopted the strategy for adaptation to climate change in Switzerland. This sets out the goals and principles for adaptation at the Federal level, identifies the areas for action in nine sectors and describes the cross-sectoral challenges. The adaptation strategy is being coordinated within the interdepartmental committee on the climate (IDA Klima), led by the FOEN.

The following goals apply for adapting to climate change:

  • Switzerland will exploit the opportunities arising from climate change.
  • It will minimise the risks of climate change, protect the population, real assets and natural resources,
  • and increase the adaptability of society, the economy and the environment.

Action plan 2020–25

On 19 August 2020, the Federal Council adopted an action plan on the implementation of the adaptation strategy in the period 2020–25. This builds on the first action plan for the period 2014–19 and implements many of the measures contained in it.

The 2020–25 action plan contains 75 measures at federal level. 63 of the measures concern activities in the water management, management of natural hazards, soil protection, agriculture, forestry, energy, tourism, biodiversity management, health (human and animal), housing and spatial development sectors. Most of these measures aim to improve the framework for adapting to climate change, to improve the knowledge base through monitoring and research, to review and, where necessary, amend standards, to develop new management strategies and to integrate adaptation into existing processes and forms of cooperation.

12 measures are cross-sectoral and aim to improve the knowledge base and knowledge transfer as well as the coordination and support of the implementation of the adaptation strategy.

The analysis of the climate-related opportunities and risks in Switzerland and the CH2018 climate scenarios were used as a basis for the 2020–25 action plan. Adopting a precautionary approach, the action plan is based on a climate scenario without additional global climate protection measures.

Further information


Last modification 21.12.2023

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