Project co-financed by the LIFE Program
EU financial contribution 55%
LIFE20 CCA / ES / 001641

Project sheet

Name: Coastal Flooding Adaptation to Climate Change through flexible strategies in Macaronesia urban areas

Reference: LIFE20 CCA / ES / 001641

Acronym: LIFE Garachico

Financing: LIFE program of the European Commission (2020 call)

Subprogram: Climate Action

Priority area: Climate Change Adaptation

Sector: Water (incl. flood management, coastal areas)

Countries involved: Portugal, Azores – Spain, Canary Islands

Budget: 2.638.132 €
EU contribution: €1,450,969 (55,00% of the total budget)

Duration: from 09/21/2021 to 09/21/2026 (61 months)

Consortium: 11 partners from public and private entities

Coordination: Vice Ministry of the Fight against Climate Change and Ecological Transition - Government of the Canary Islands


The islands have a great tourist pressure in the coastal zone and are very exposed to the storms of the Atlantic which makes them especially vulnerable to the impacts of Climate Change, due to the rise in sea level and the increase in frequency and intensity of strong waves, which increase the risk of coastal flooding. In the last decade, it is estimated that the socio-economic losses due to the effects of coastal flooding amount to about 250 million euros in Macaronesia.

In addition, we are facing a coastline that presents a very abrupt orography that makes conventional adaptation measures unfeasible due to the great economic investment  environmental what they suppose


LIFE Garachico proposes the development of methodologies for the creation of a Flexible Adaptation Strategic Framework for the coastal municipalities of Macaronesia, based on the evaluation of acceptable risk levels and specific interventions at the local level, in order to increase resilience of these areas against current and future extreme coastal events due to climate change.

Specific objectives


Standardize a coastal flood risk analysis procedure by CC in urban areas in a MEAF > A1, A2, A3, A4+ D1


Provide tools to determine acceptable risk levels for urban communities → A4 + A1, A2, A3 + C2 + D1


Implement in Garachico and replicate in Praia da Vitória and Puerto de la Cruz adaptation measures that, together with early warning systems, reduce risk → C1, C2, C3 + D1


Develop technical recommendations and management tools in a MEAF to reduce the risk of flooding and for its implementation in Macaronesia → C4 + D1 + E1, E2


Develop new management policies and market products together with the various stakeholders to manage the remaining risk and increase employability → C5 + D2, D3 and D4 + E2, E3, E4


Promote the implementation of the MEAF in other vulnerable coastal urban areas of the EU → C6 + E2 + D3, D4 + E1, E2

The project will not only consider scientific-technical solutions for the development of the adaptation strategy, but rather it intends to go further, involving the different social and economic actors affected by the coastal floods of Garachico. Citizens will be counted on both in the risk assessment and in the planning of the actions.


LIFE Garachico is implemented through twenty actions that are organized following the following structure:

A1: Mapping/Identification: Characterization of exposure and vulnerability of coastal urban areas in the pilot location of Garachico. Identification of geophysical-social-political aspects

A2: Identification of the perception of coastal flooding risk of the different actors under the different CC scenarios.

A3: Analysis of coastal flood risk and resilience in the pilot location of Garachico.

A4: Definition of acceptable level of risk of coastal flooding in the pilot location of Garachico.

C1: Implementation of the early warning system for coastal flooding in the pilot location of Garachico.

C2: Implementation of the adaptation strategy in the pilot location of Garachico.

C3: Replication and analysis of limitations of the implementation of the adaptation strategy in the replication locations of Puerto de la Cruz (Spain) and Praia da Vitória (Portugal).

C4: Technical Recommendations and Management Tools: definition of a flexible adaptation framework against coastal flooding due to the effect of CC in urban coastal areas and policy development.

C5: Study, together with the insurance sector, the feasibility of creating special insurance based on flexible adaptation policies against coastal flooding.

C6: Capitalization of experiences of the adaptation strategy against coastal flooding due to the effect of CC in experimental cases and analysis of the derived benefits.

D1: Monitoring of Preparatory and Implementation Actions.

D2: Monitoring of Communication and Management Actions.

D3: Monitoring of the socio-economic impact of the project.

D.4: Evaluation of Project Indicators (KPIs).

E1: Disclosure of the project.

E2: Capitalization of the project: Creation of a regional platform in Macaronesia to develop and apply the adaptation strategy against coastal flooding due to CC.

E3: Development of technical and professional training: Creation of a Specialization Course and development of professional training workshops, in the design and implementation of adaptation measures against coastal flooding due to CC in urban areas.

E4: Networking with other projects.

F1: Project management.
F2: After-LIFE plan.



Detail on the progress of the project

LIFE program

The LIFE program is the financial instrument of the European Union that supports projects related to the environment, nature conservation and climate change in the EU.

The general objective of the program is to contribute to the implementation, updating and development of policies and regulations related to the environment and climate through the co-financing of projects with European added value.

In the period 2014-2020, the LIFE program contributed approximately 3.4 billion euros to environmental and climate protection.

Contribution of the project to the political priorities of the EU:

  1. EU strategy on adaptation to climate change (COM/2013/216) and the new adaptation strategy (2021).
  2. The European Green Deal (COM/2019/640) and Green Public Procurement (COM/2008/400).
  3. Water Framework Directives (2000/60/CE, article 4.1 c)
  4. Marine Strategy Framework Directive (2008/56/CE, 1.2 b).
  5. EU Urban Agenda and the Covenant of Mayors initiative.
  6. Impact on national policies through the inclusion of project measures in the Climate Action Plan of the Government of the Canary Islands.
  7. Impacts on the management of coastal areas at the municipal level through the adoption of the project's Technical Guide as a guide to good practices.


Discover the progress of the LIFE Garachico project.