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CEDR Report "Acting on Climate Change" (2016)

Description

The report has been produced by CEDR’s Climate Change Group and approved by the Governing Board. It notes that acting on climate change is not a unified topic for road owners, and that both mitigation and adaptation has to be addressed. Despite dissimilarities, adaptation and mitigation share the need for long-term planning for an uncertain but undoubtedly different future.

The consequences of climate change are already at a stage where roads are affected noticeably more frequently than they were a few years ago, a fact experienced and recognised by multiple national road authorities. In order to maintain safety and mobility on national roads, the time has come to implement the many tools and methodologies developed in recent years in various national and international projects. However, initiating and anchoring climate change adaptation within an organisation is a demanding and oftentimes overwhelming task. This can lead to a de-prioritised approach, despite the benefits of investing in proactive adaptation measures.

The report addresses the role of climate change in strategic road planning, and includes two sections. The first one "Planning for GHG reductions according to national targets" is devoted to mitigation, making the case for a radical move away from the traditional way of planning road infrastructure, in order to reach the goals for GHG reduction consistent with the Paris 2015 agreement; the report provides an alternative methodology to plan mitigation activities and measures. The second section, "Strategy and action planning for adaptation activities", includes four templates supporting the development of an adaptation strategy of road infrastructure. The templates are dedicated, respectively, to management, improvement, prevention and cooperation and can also be used by other transport modes. The report also provides an updated review of risk identification methods. It provides specific examples on areas such as information to road users, incident management, implementation through planning phases, tools for risk analyses, legislative work, research, information-sharing and much more. A template for an action plan is provided, giving examples of how to ensure responsibility and anchor climate change adaptation in the organisation in order to steer the organisation towards a more climate-resilient profile. An organisational awareness of climate change adaptation in an interdisciplinary context is considered undeniably crucial in this regard, since this will form the basis of how to act and prioritise resources.

Reference information

Websites:
Source:
Conference of European Directors of Roads (CEDR)

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