Resources for operators to prepare for the impacts of climate change.
Why is adaptation important to infrastructure?
Effective, reliable infrastructure underpins economic activity and society. Infrastructure refers to essential services: energy, water, transport, IT and telecommunications, and waste management. These systems are vulnerable to risks such as flooding, water scarcity and higher temperatures.
In 2007, heavy rain in Gloucestershire caused thousands to be left without water after a water treatment plant flooded, and half a million households were in imminent danger of losing their electricity supply due to flooding at a major substation.
Infrastructure must be prepared for the future climate as assets remain in use for several decades, for example, major rail network improvements or new power stations.
- Developing a consistent approach to adaptation in infrastructure planning along with case studies as part of the Infrastructure Operators Adaptation Forum
- Promoting the adaptation advice we have developed with the Planning Inspectorate
- Developing and delivering training for local highways engineers with Climate UK and the Association of Directors of Environment, Economy, Planning & Transport
- Helping academic and engineering institutions integrate adaptation into courses and training
- Continuing to help the energy sector to explore long-term risks related to its use of water
- Encouraging ICT and transport sectors to build resilience to climate risks
- Supporting Environment Agency colleagues to ensure that we incorporate climate change into our work
Contact us to find out more on our priorities or achievements, and sign up to our e-bulletin to keep up to date with future developments:
- We set up the Infrastructure Operators Adaptation Forum to help the sector work together on adaptation
- Helped government to develop the National Adaptation Programme
- With Ofgem, we ensured its framework for distribution network includes adaptation requirements
- Helped the energy industry assess risks related to future use of water
- Worked with the Planning Inspectorate to develop advice to help those building major infrastructure to consider climate change
- Ensured climate risks are considered in the periodic review of the water industry (PR14)
- Advised Department for Transport’s on adaptation for its draft Aviation Policy Framework
- Helped Defra and the Technology Strategy Board find and encourage innovations which support adaptation in the infrastructure sector
The government published the UK Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA) in 2012, a review of the evidence for potential impacts of a changing climate across the UK. It is the first in a five year cycle.