Climate change may lead to particularly severe impacts on certain species and habitats.
Hotter, drier summers can lead to greater frequency of extreme low flows in chalk streams; with negative effects on invertebrate, fish and plant communities. Summer droughts and increased storminess in winter may have detrimental effects on beech woodlands.
Chalk grassland plant and invertebrate communities (many of which are tolerant of relatively warm, dry conditions) could benefit from future climate change, providing other threats to their conservation such as habitat fragmentation are addressed.
The inclusion and enhancement of both landscapes and habitats can be used in the following ways to help mitigate and adapt to climate change:
- Use of green spaces as effective carbon sinks.
- Water efficient landscaping i.e. introducing drought resistant species.
- Use of naturally fed ‘bluespace’ and water features to provide cooling and irrigation.
- Use of green infrastructure such as gardens and parks to provide shade and cooling.
- Use of green infrastructure as temporary storage for floodwater.
Further information on appropriate climate change adaptation solutions relating to landscape and biodiversity can be found in the Climate Change Adaptation module.