Climate Change Adaptation
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- 2013-2015 Climate Resilience Pilot Program: Outcomes, Lessons Learned, and Recommendations (July 2016). From 2013 to 2015, nineteen pilot teams partnered with FHWA to assess transportation vulnerability and evaluate options for improving resilience. This report synthesizes lessons learned, identified needs, and recommended next steps from the pilot program. It includes illustrative project findings, outcomes, and examples throughout. (PDF 2.5 MB) New: 8/1/2016
- Climate Change and Transportation Infographic - (January 2016) This infographic shows the importance of taking action early to plan for infrastructure resilience and to cut transportation greenhouse gas emissions. It summarizes actions that state and regional transportation agencies can take. (PDF 1 MB)
- Climate Change Resilience Pilots Reports and Information - (January 2016) In two groups of pilot projects, FHWA partnered with states and metropolitan areas to conduct climate change and extreme weather vulnerability assessments of transportation infrastructure and to analyze options for adapting and improving resiliency.
- Gulf Coast Study Reports - (January 2015) This groundbreaking U.S. DOT study produced tools and lessons learned that transportation agencies across the country are using to assess vulnerabilities and build resilience to climate change. Reports include 1) synthesis of lessons learned and methods applied; 2) criticality assessment; 3) climate projections and sensitivity assessment; 4) vulnerability assessment; 5) engineering assessment of adaptation options. Summaries and multi-media materials also available.
- Building Climate Resilient Transportation - (January 2015) Four page graphic summary of how FHWA, states, and regions are responding to climate change and what transportation agencies can do. (PDF, 2.8MB)
- FHWA Climate Change & Extreme Weather Vulnerability Assessment Framework (December 2012) - This document is a guide for transportation agencies interested in assessing their vulnerability to climate change and extreme weather events. It gives and overview of key steps in conducting vulnerability assessments and uses in-practice examples to demonstrate a variety of ways to gather and process information. (PDF 2.2 MB)
- Hydraulic Engineering Circular 17: Highways in the River Environment - Floodplains, Extreme Events, Risk, and Resilience, 2nd Edition (June 2016) Provides technical guidance and methods for assessing the vulnerability of transportation facilities to extreme events and climate change in riverine environments.(PDF, 6MB)
- TechBrief: Climate Change Adaptation for Pavements (August 2015)
This TechBrief from FHWA's Office of Infrastructure describes climate change impacts on pavement systems along with specific pavement adaptation strategies that can be implemented now and in the future.
- Engineering Assessment of Adaptation Options, Gulf Coast Study. (November 2014) Presents an 11-step process for analyzing climate change adaptation measures during the engineering of transportation facilities. Provides case studies from a variety of asset types, including culvert, bridge, tunnel, rail, shipping pier, and pavement. Full Report (PDF 16.8 MB). Summaries (HTML).
- Hydraulic Engineering Circular 25, Vol. 2: Highways in the Coastal Environment: Assessing Extreme Events (October 31, 2014) - provides technical guidance and methods for assessing the vulnerability of coastal transportation facilities to extreme events and climate change, focusing on sea level rise, storm surge, and waves. (PDF, 6.89MB)
- Transportation Engineering Approaches to Climate Resiliency TEACR (October 2015) The objective of this project is to develop recommended engineering practices for identifying and evaluating project-level vulnerabilities from future extreme weather events and climate change, and designing solutions to respond and adapt to those vulnerabilities. Engineering analyses of a diverse set of transportation assets around the country were performed in order to identify best practices for improving the resiliency of the transportation system to extreme weather and climate change. The result will be a cross-cutting set of recommendations for engineering practice to cover a wide range of facility types and locations.
- Culvert Management Case Studies: Vermont, Oregon, Ohio and Los Angeles County (June 2014)- This report describes how four agencies are managing maintenance and increasing the resilience of their culvert systems.
- Assessment of the Body of Knowledge on Incorporating Climate Change Adaptation Measures into Transportation Projects (December 2013) - This report highlights adaptation actions that transportation agencies are pursuing and articulates a growing set of best practices for implementing adaptation. The report also discusses strategies, examples, and best practices for evaluating the costs and benefits of adaptation. The purpose of the report is to provide transportation practitioners with a guide to the current "state of practice" in this field. (PDF 1.2 MB)
- Federal Lands Southeast Region Climate Change Transportation Project (November 2014) -
FHWA partnered with the U.S. National Park Service, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on a project to develop a tool to help agencies manage their transportation assets in the face of climate change. Major project components include: (1) a synthesis report of federal lands climate change efforts and current best practices; (2) a Southeast Region Climate Change and Transportation Tool to help National Parks and National Wildlife Refuges assess climate vulnerabilities and develop adaptation strategies; and (3) workshops at four pilot units (two parks and two refuges) to test best practices and tool components. (PDF 1.3 MB)
- Managing External Threats through Risk-Based Asset Management (March 2013) explains how risk-based asset management serves as a climate adaptation strategy.
Climate Change Projections
- The Use of Climate Information in Vulnerability Assessments (January 2011) - This memorandum focuses on the use of climate information when performing a vulnerability assessment. The memorandum describes several sources of precipitation and temperature information, and provides some recommendations on how this information can be used by transportation planners as they consider their climate-related risks. The memorandum has an Appendix which outlines some of the methods employed by pilots to estimate the impacts of sea-level rise. (PDF 400 KB)
- Regional Climate Change Effects: Useful Information for Transportation Agencies (May 2010). Also in PDF: Report & Appendix A (1.3MB), Appendix B (17.5MB), Appendix C (463KB). - This document provides basic information on projected future climate change effects (changes in temperature, precipitation, storm activity and sea level rise) over the near term, mid-century and end-of-century. The report includes two appendices: maps for some of the climate change effects, and a "typology" of projected climate change information gleaned from recent reports.
- The Potential Impacts of Global Sea Level Rise on Transportation Infrastructure - Atlantic Coast Study (October 2008). This study assesses the potential net effects of sea level rise, and associated increases in storm surges, on transportation infrastructure coastal states and low-lying regions on the Atlantic coast from New York to Florida. Using statistics from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the report describes several scenarios for sea level rise and provides a series of statewide and county maps that visualize the potential impacts of sea level rise on transportation infrastructure.