Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC) organized a webinar on ‘Building Climate-resilient Transport Infrastructures for a Changing World’ to provide essential information and raise awareness on integrating climate risk-informed planning approaches in the transport sector.
Over 120 participants tuned in from across the world to understand the necessity of developing a new planning approach that integrates climate risk and climate variability, emphasizing the role of strategic and policy-level efforts and improving institutional capacities related to transport.
‘Roads and bridges in countries like Bangladesh or Nepal have been damaged by flooding, extremely dry conditions, and landslides,’ he said, adding that increasing precipitation rates and heat over time will continue to degrade the conditions of transport assets.
Dr. Towashiraporn also addressed the importance of using evidence-based approaches to guide climate change policy and investment decisions. He explained that ADPC is working with and supporting the governments of Nepal and Bangladesh as pilot countries to derive strategies, guidelines, and action plans for the transport sector to be ready for such impacts.
Dr. Milad Zamanifar, Regional Resilient Transport Specialist, ADPC, spoke about the concept of resilience, new planning approaches, and recommendations for climate-resilience planning and strategies for transport infrastructures.
Climate-induced hazards like landslides are fast and high-impact, but slow climate extremes like increasing or decreasing temperatures and variations in precipitation are just as damaging to South Asia’s roads.
Dr. Zamanifar cited that there is currently a US $8 trillion road infrastructure investment gap worldwide, and this statistic is tremendously increasing due to rising demand. ‘In South Asia, in particular, we have one of the highest vulnerable road assets and the lack of redundancy,’ he said, adding that unprecedented floods in Bangladesh and India last year and recent landslides in Nepal demonstrate how crucial it is for the region to help address this investment gap.
Participants had a chance to share their views and ask questions on topics like traditional/collaborative governance, financial considerations of transport planning, climate-induced road damage, and the availability of asset management systems in their country.
Mr. Alam also briefed participants on recent activities and how ADPC is supporting transport authorities in Bangladesh and Nepal through the Climate Adaptation and Resilience (CARE) for South Asia project.