Climate change report warns of 'cascading' infrastructure risks

 

More action is needed on climate change as the UK faces ‘cascading infrastructure failures’ and a rise in heat-related deaths, a major report has warned.

The Climate Change Committee (CCC), which provides independent, evidence-based advice to the Government and Parliament, has published its UK Climate Change Risk Assessment Evidence Report, which highlights risks to infrastructure and transport networks.

The CCC highlighted the ‘risks of cascading infrastructure failures across interdependent networks’, for example where bridges that carry power supplies and communications cables collapse causing a series of knock-on problems. Concerns were also raised over food and water supplies.

The number of heat-related deaths in the UK is projected to increase by around 250% by the 2050s (median estimate), due to climate change and the growing ageing population, from a current baseline of around 2,000 heat-related deaths per year.

”Local
Flood damage to a bridge in Tadcaster last winter

Lord Krebs, chairman of the Adaptation Sub-Committee of the CCC, said: ‘The impacts of climate change are becoming ever clearer, both in the United Kingdom and around the world. We must take action now to prepare for the further, inevitable changes we can expect.

‘Our independent assessment today, supported by the work of hundreds of scientists and other experts, identifies the most urgent climate change risks and opportunities which need to be addressed.’

He added: ‘Delaying or failing to take appropriate steps will increase the costs and risks for all UK nations arising from the changing climate.’

The CCC said changes to the UK climate are likely to increase the chances of droughts and floods, increasing average and extreme temperatures, and a rise in sea levels.

The report sets out five urgent risks for the UK - the two highest being flooding and coastal change to communities, businesses and infrastructure, and risks to health, wellbeing and productivity from high temperatures.

Three further areas where more action is needed are the risk of shortages in the public water supply, risks to natural capital and risks to domestic and international food production and trade.

These require ‘new, stronger or different government policies or implementation activities – over and above those already planned' which are needed 'to reduce long-term vulnerability to climate change’.

Specific risks to infrastructure include risks to transport networks from embankment failure, risks to infrastructure from river, surface/groundwater flooding and coastal flooding, and risks of sewer flooding due to heavy rainfall.

The opportunities from climate change include the possibility that UK agriculture and forestry could increase production with warmer weather and longer growing seasons, and economic opportunities for UK businesses from an increase in global demand for adaptation-related goods and services, such as engineering and insurance.

 

Also see

Register now for full access


Register just once to get unrestricted, real-time coverage of the issues and challenges facing UK transport and highways engineers.

Full website content includes the latest news, exclusive commentary from leading industry figures and detailed topical analysis of the highways, transportation, environment and place-shaping sectors. Use the link below to register your details for full, free access.

Already a registered? Login

 
comments powered by Disqus
 
 
highways jobs

Air Quality Monitoring Project Manager

Birmingham City Council
£34,788 - £42,683
Seeking a skilled and dedicated individual with a background in environmental protection and air quality to... Birmingham, West Midlands
Recuriter: Birmingham City Council

Environmental Health Officer

Camden London Borough Council
Competitive Salary
The ideal candidate will have a detailed knowledge /understanding of the Housing Act 2004, and other legislation that... Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Assistant Engineer or Engineer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£25,327 - £36,036 depending on skills
We have an exciting opportunity for a permanent Assistant Engineer/Engineer within the traffic and engineering division to... London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Head of Infrastructure, Sustainability & Transport

The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead
Up to £93k
This is a new role that will focus on the development of a cohesive transport and infrastructure strategy for the borough... Windsor, Berkshire
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

Senior Engineer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£35,246 - £45,704 depending on skills
Are you an experienced traffic or highway engineer with a good track record in the delivery of traffic, public realm and/or parking schemes? London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Senior Traffic Orders Officer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£35,246 - £42,710 depending on skills
Do you have experience of working for a local authority processing and delivering traffic management orders? London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Roadworks Inspector

Transport for London
£32,500 plus substantial benefits
You’ll review thousands of roadworks reports sent by other operational TfL staff and the Met Police andñ... Southwark, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Transport for London

Head of Planning Policy, Transport & Infrastructure Planning

Berwick Partners
Competitive Salary
This is a senior position within Be First’s Planning & Building Control Team, and you will... London (Greater)
Recuriter: Berwick Partners

Transportation Engineer

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£29,636 - £33,799 per annum
Applicants should hold an appropriate qualification, preferably to degree level, and have knowledge of transportation issues. Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Trading Standards Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£36,630 - £42,490 per annum
Seeking to recruit highly motivated and experienced Trading Standards Officer’s to join our busy Business and Consumer Services team. Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Nature Conservation Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£36,630 - £42,490
Exciting opportunity now exists for a dynamic nature conservation professional, to be the lead officer for the Council in all matters relating to Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Environmental Health Officer/Enforcement

Brent Council
£35,724 - £41,706 p.a. inc.
Looking to recruit an Environmental Health Officer / Enforcement Officer preferably with experience of... Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Surface Water Engineer (Maternity Cover)

Essex County Council
£30000 - £35000 per annum + Excellent Benefits Package
The Surface Water Engineer contributes to the development and implementation of strategic plans, policy and best practice to improve the Council's knowledge and understanding of surface water flood risk and methods of management. England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Highways Project Engineer

Telford & Wrekin Council
£32,878 - 35,934 per annum
Exciting opportunity to provide technical highway input into all stages of development, within the... Telford, Shropshire
Recuriter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Highway Maintenance Senior Professional and Technical Officer - Level 1

Bristol City Council
£27,905 - £31,371
The job involves project managing and assisting senior colleagues with coordinating tasks and projects, using appropriate techniques to ensure.... City of Bristol
Recuriter: Bristol City Council

Highways Inspector

Hackney London Borough Council
£28,752 - £32,577
Seeking an experienced Highways Inspector to join the Highways Team. London (Greater)
Recuriter: Hackney London Borough Council

Street Lighting Technical Administrator

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£25,327 - £33,554 depending on skills
Are you looking for working arrangements that enhance your work-life balance? London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Environmental Protection Officer

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£24,313 - £28,785 per annum
Looking to recruit officers to further strengthen our pool of Environmental Protection Officers who are responsible for... Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Citizen & Consumer Protection Officer – Environmental Health x2

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£29,636 - £33,799 per annum
Looking for a suitably qualified and competent Environmental Health Officer or Food Safety / Health and Safety Officer registered with the... Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Senior Pest Control Officer (Commercial)

Brent Council
£33,291 - £35,724 p.a. inc.
Looking for a pest control officer that bring additional expertise to the team and support the manager in developing and supporting our clients. Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council