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Christophe Heyndrickx

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Effects of climate change
on the inland waterway networks

ECCONET Final Seminar

The ECCONET Final Seminar took place on the 11th of December 2012 in Rotterdam. Have a look at the agenda and the presentations.

SUMMARY AND OBJECTIVE

The objective of this European FP7 project was to gather the expertise of partners from different fields related to meteorology, hydrology, infrastructure operation, transportation and economics in order to assess the effect of climate change on the transport network, taking the inland waterway network as a case-study.

During the project (2010-2012), we cooperated and exchanged information with other FP7 projects, namely EWENT and WEATHER. These projects also focus on the effects of extreme weather conditions on transport modes, but do not focus in particular on the Inland Waterway Transport (IWT) mode.  

The project worked in 2 parallel phases/objectives:

  • Analysis of various effects of climate change on IWT and related sectors
  • Analysis of adaptation strategies and their impacts as well as development of recommendations and a strategic framework for the further development of the IWT model

The project evaluated recent climate change scenarios, leading to predictions on the weather conditions in the future.

In the next step of the project we calibrated the transport model to the current climate and economic conditions. Then, we evaluated the effect of changes in the economy (increase in demand for transport) and changes in climate conditions on the costs and reliability of inland waterway transport and other transport modes, thereby referring to a time horizon 2050. These calculations formed the basis for a reference scenario, where no adaptation strategies related to IWT are assumed. We also investigated possible changes in transport flows and further economic impacts (e.g. in terms of a welfare changes).

In parallel with the construction of the reference scenario, we identified proper adaptation strategies for coping with possible climate change effects on IWT. We  assessed them with respect to their applicability, implementation and costs.

As a result of the previous steps, we established policy guidelines and a development plan for IWT. This provides targeted input to the European IWT infrastructure development plan to be elaborated within the FP7 project PLATINA, which is dedicated to the implementation of NAIADES. We disseminated results of the project during workshops organised within each work package and communicated to a larger group of stakeholders.

 

January 2010: PRESS RELEASE (pdf)

PROJECT FLYER (pdf)

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