rural district: Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz

Background and Goals

One of seven rural districts in the Oberpfalz administrative region, the Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz rural district covers approximately the geographic centre of Bavaria over an area of 1,344 km² and has a population of 128,595 (June 2008). The rural district has a population density of 94 inhabitants per km², among the lowest figures in Western Germany. From a landscape perspective, the Neumarkt i.d. Opf. rural district contains parts of the Franconian Jura and the Franconian Keuper-Lias Plains. With limestone as the parent material, the soils in the district are shallow and have poor water retention capacity. The district has a continental climate.


An action concept for adaptation to climate change will be drawn up for the local authorities in the district and for the rural district as a whole. The findings obtained from the research project will be incorporated into subsequent planning process at local and district level and into updates of the regional plan. The resilience of the region to climate change will be significantly improved in the medium term thanks to successful planning and implementation of measures.

Content time


Research area/region

  • Germany
Region of implementation (all German federal states)
  • Bavaria
Natural spatial classification
  • Alp and North Bavarian hills
Spatial resolution 

Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz

Steps in the process of adaptation to climate change

Step 1: Understand and describe climate change

Approach and results 

The climate projections used are based on the global climate model ECHAM5-T63L31/MPI-OM and four regional models CLM and REMO (dynamic models), and WETTREG and STAR (statistical models). Cooperation with the German Meteorological Office (DWD).

Parameter (climate signals)
  • Altered rainfall patterns
  • Higher average temperatures
  • Extreme precipitation (incl. hail, snow)
  • Storm
Further Parameters 

wind, extreme events

Step 2a: Identify and assess risks - climate effects and impact

Approach and results 

The rural district of Neumarkt is expected to experience a 1.25°C to 1.5°C rise in average air temperature in the summer season. A temperature increase of over 2°C is expected for the winter season. Declining precipitation in summer will be offset by an increase in precipitation in the winter. According to the model calculations, the rural district of Neumarkt will be particularly affected by the increasingly dry summers.

Agriculture and forestry are at risk from summer dryness, increasing storm damage and an increased distribution of pests, resulting in reduced harvests if cultivation methods are not adapted. In terms of conservation, there may be adverse effects on individual habitats and on overall biodiversity. In the area of health, non-adapted housing and commercial construction will become problematic due to increasing hot periods; an increase in heat-related illnesses and deaths is feared. The adverse effects of storms and heavy rain events on infrastructure are also set to increase.

Step 2b: Identify and assess risks - Vulnerability, risks and chances

Approach and results 

The process for development of a regional climate adaptation strategy will be technically supported by studies on the three sets of issues, in which planning principles, regional vulnerability and adaptation potential will be analysed.

Step 3: Develop and compare measures

Measures and/or strategies 

Examples of regional strategies and measures for adaptation to climate change include: Promotion of alternative and efficient biomass production methods, promotion of energy efficient, environmentally and climate friendly building development planning, increased integration of the water retention function in multifunctional green corridors, and promotion of adaptation strategies in agriculture in the area of cultivation

Housing and infrastructure, construction, health issues:

- Precautions from climate adapted housing development and open space design;

- Risk analysis and concepts for protection of infrastructure facilities in the rural district in case of extreme weather events;

- Water management for drinking water supply;

- Provision of information for climate adaptation methods and techniques in construction;

- Proposed measures for health care after extreme weather events;

Energy issue:

- Promotion of wind, solar and bio energy through participative land use planning;

- Location concepts for increased use of combined heat and power;

Agriculture and forestry, conservation, tourism issues:

- Cultivation of climate adapted plants / adapted land management methods;

- Adaptation of product range / regional marketing of products;

- Generation of biomass for use of renewable energies;

- Networking of habitats for flora and fauna;

- Adaptation of tourism infrastructure;

Time horizon
  • 2071–2100 (far future)

Step 4: Plan and implement measures

Measures and/or strategies 

Within the overall spatial planning model project (MORO) on "Spatial development strategies for climate change" (KlimaMORO), the Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz rural district was selected as a model region for development of regional planning strategies and climate protection measures, especially for adaptation to climate change, as part of the "KlimaNeu - Regional adaptation strategies for climate change" project. It will be based on a bottom-up process involving local authorities, public bodies, residents and business.


Funding / Financing 

Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development (BMVBS) and the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development (BBSR): KlimaMORO

Project management 

Coordination: District Office Neumarkt id Opf;
regional research assistant: Universtiät the Bundeswehr in Munich, Institute for Transport Studies and Planning


Valentum Consulting Group in Regensburg and Regina GmbH in Neumarkt;


Landratsamt Neumarkt i.d. OPf.
Sachgebiet 23 Energiebüro
Nürnberger Str. 1
D-92318 Neumarkt

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Fields of action:
 agriculture  biological diversity  building sector  energy sector  human health  spatial, regional and urban land use planning  tourism industry  woodland and forestry