Adapting Transport to Climate Change and Extreme Weather

Implications for Infrastructure Owners and Network Managers

image of Adapting Transport to Climate Change and Extreme Weather

This report addresses the fundamental challenges that climate change poses to infrastructure owners, who face two major challenges. First, they must ensure continued asset performance under sometimes significantly modified climate conditions that may decrease the present value of their networks or increase maintenance and refurbishment costs. Second, they must build new assets in the context of changing and uncertain climate variables. This creates a risk of over- or under-specification of infrastructure design standards, potentially resulting in non-productive investments or network service degradation. This report investigates strategies that can help transport authorities contain network performance risks inherent in changing patterns of extreme weather.



The potential effects of climate change on transport infrastructure

International Transport Forum

Much of the understanding of the linkages between human-caused emissions of greenhouse gases and other anthropogenic climate changes is based on complex climate models that have generally performed well in tracking current global temperatures. Nonetheless, these models are approximations (albeit very sophisticated ones) that cumulate several possible sources of errors. This chapter will discuss in general terms the current scientific state of understanding of the direction and scope of climate change and how these changes may give rise to transport infrastructure or network service-damaging hazards. It also addresses the extent with which confidence can or should be ascribed to projections of future hazards such as temperature change, sea level rise, changes in precipitation, etc.


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