Effects of Climate Change on Infrastructures
According to IPCC climate change predictions, countries around the world will likely face dramatic climate changes in the near future. More floods, drier summers and wetter winters are expected, along with the rise of sea levels and increase of wind speeds. The operational issues imposed on civil engineering structures by the change in temperature, precipitation, sea level etc. are already recognized. The goal of this Task Group is to characterize not only the severity of impacts but also give recommendations for mitigation and remediation strategies for buildings, bridges and other civil engineering structures. More specifically, the project promotes the technical discussion of topics related to:
- the main effects of climate change and their consequences on structural performance, in the context of evolving loads, load frequencies or loading scenarios
- mitigation and remediation solutions to enhance resilience of infrastructures to extreme weather events in the short, medium and long-term
- the development of cost-benefit analysis, risk assessment methodologies, modelling, engineering design, technology, asset management, optimization under uncertainty where the cost of loss or remediation following the hazard impact is compared to the cost of applied mitigation
Scope & Limitation
The project considers the criticality of particular structures, i.e. the impact of their failure in the operation/functionality of the systems they belong to (e.g. transport systems in the case of bridges). The team may also propose some revision aspects of design standards (i.e. climate adaptation measures) to reduce the impacts of climate change on structures. Such revisions will focus on limit state failure verifications, global failure aspects and foreseen consequences of extreme events on built infrastructure (use of probabilistic approaches, risk analysis frameworks, etc).
TG 6.1 will also aim to provide guidance for assessing existing structures and their adaptation in view of climate changes. The project shall include analyzing adaptation options in maintenance planning to mitigate the impact and enhance the adaptive capacity and resilience of structures to changing climate, e.g. simulate impacts of climate change on carbonation and corrosion through penetration of chloride in existing concrete. This approach will consider environmental variables and their uncertainties as well as material properties. The objective will be to identify a number of climate change adaptation options and to determine their effectiveness.
Expected Project Output
The Task Group plans to work on case studies where the effects of climate change are taken into account. The organization of a workshop relevant to the project results is another objective.
Start Date: November 2017
Target Date of Completion: October 2022