Will Climate Change have an impact on transportation?

Many studies have already examined the potential impacts of climate change on broad sectors of the economy, such as agriculture and forestry, but only a handful have studied the impacts on transportation. Transportation professionals should look into the challenges posed by climate change and incorporate current scientific knowledge into the planning, design, construction, operation, and maintenance of transportation systems. Obviously, the primary focus of this study is on the consequences of climate change for U.S. transportation infrastructure and operations, but many – if not most – of the conclusion are just as applicable anywhere else in the world

No exception

Every mode of transportation will be affected as climate change poses new and often unfamiliar challenges to infrastructure providers, as in China this winter.

A report from the US

Special Report 290: Potential Impacts of Climate Change on U.S. Transportation is the report from a study conducted by a committee of experts under the auspices of the Transportation Research Board and the Division on Earth and Life Studies of the National Research Council.

Potentially, the greatest impact of climate change on North America’s transportation system will be flooding of coastal roads, railways, transit systems, and runways because of a global rise in sea level coupled with storm surge and exacerbated in some locations by land subsidence. The vulnerability of transportation infrastructure to climate change, however, will extend well beyond coastal areas. Therefore, federal, state, and local governments, in collaboration with owners and operators of infrastructure such as ports and airports and private railroad and pipeline companies, should inventory critical transportation infrastructure to identify whether, when, and where projected climate changes in particular regions might be consequential.

The report makes the case that focusing on the problem now should help avoid costly future investments and disruptions to operations.

What should be done?

The primary focus of this study is on the consequences of climate change for U.S. transportation infrastructure and operations:

  • Incorporate Climate Change into Investment Decisions
  • Adopt Strategic, Risk-Based Approaches to Decision Making
  • Improve Communication
  • Integrate Evacuation Planning and Emergency Response into Transportation Operations
  • Develop and Implement Monitoring Technologies
  • Share Best Practices
  • Reevaluate Design Standards
  • Include Climate Change in Transportation and Land Use Planning
  • Evaluate the National Flood Insurance Program and Flood Insurance Rate Maps
  • Develop New Organizational Arrangements

After  reading it I have to admit that many of the conclusion are just as applicable anywhere else in the world.

Downloads

Links

Related

Posted in REPORTS and WHITEPAPERS
Tags: , , , , ,
ARTICLES and PAPERS
Perspectives on risk management in supply chains
narasimhan-talluri-perspectives-on-risk-management
Today's article is actually not an article on it's own, but an editorial to a special 2009 issue of [...]
Sheffi's Resilient Enterprise and supply chain risk
sheffi-disruption
It is unfortunate that many companies still leave risk management and business continuity to securit[...]
Risky ramblings
spekman-risky-business
Why such a title for today's post? The abstract of the 2004 article Risky business: Expanding the di[...]
BOOKS and BOOK CHAPTERS
Book Review: Transportation Network Analysis
transportation-network-analysis
Transportation Network Analysis by M. G. H. Bell and Yasunori Iida is a book for the expert rather t[...]
Book Review: Logistics and Supply Chain Management
logistics-and-supply-chain-management
This book by Martin Christopher, Logistics & Supply Chain Management, is one of the better if [...]
Book Review - Fraud Risk
fraud-risk-gower
Last year I was approached by Gower Publishing and invited to review their Short Guides to Business [...]
REPORTS and WHITEPAPERS
Managing supply chain risk
economist-supply-chain-risk-report
In September and October 2009 the Economist Intelligence Unit surveyed 500 company executives with r[...]
Are roads more important than computers?
transportation-disruption
Critical Infrastructure. Which is more important - or 'critical' - road networks or computers? What [...]
Hiperos - the Integrated View of Supplier Risk
hiperos-supplier-risk
Supply chains have gone global. No longer are they a point-to-chain of goods flowing from a source t[...]