Adapting to a changing climate
The construction and maintenance of national road and light rail infrastructure has taken on a new dimension in the last decade as a result of a global coordination of climatic models and predicted changes in climatic parameters. Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) is adapting and developing strategies for various extreme climatic events that will impact the national road and light rail network. Climatic factors such as increases in rainfall intensities have been factored into the design of national road schemes for several years. However, the main challenges facing TII, in relation to the national road network, relate to the fact that a large proportion of the network consists of “legacy” roads evolved from historic routes that are often constrained by physical or environmental conditions.
The Dublin light rail transit system (Luas) is constructed on the city’s roads and is, therefore, prone to many of the same extreme climatic factors impacting the national roads.
Impacts from a changing climate in Ireland may not be as severe as those predicted in other European countries but they are likely to include more frequent flooding, increased risk of landslides, pavement degradation and potential storm damage.
This strategy for adapting to climate change on Ireland’s light rail and national road network outlines TII’s strategy in relation to adapting to climate change and extreme weather events.