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22270.COM_国际英语新闻:Adaptation of transport infrastructure to climate change discussed in Athens

Source: Xinhuanet    2019-11-19  我要投稿   论坛   Favorite  

ATHENS, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- Transportation infrastructure tends to be at risk due to both incremental climate change and extreme weather events, experts pointed out during an international conference held on Monday in Athens.

The two-day international conference, entitled "Raising awareness on adaptation of transport infrastructure to climate change impacts" , was jointly hosted by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the Hellenic Logistics Association.

It brought together researchers and experts from the UN, the European Union (EU), and the World Meteorological Organization.

Experts warned that extreme weather events are increasing in intensity and frequency, while slower ones such as the rise in sea level are continuing. Their combination can damage transportation infrastructure and disrupt supply chains.

"The problem with the infrastructure and climate change shows us that we have critical threats that we have to cope with as countries, businesses, and scientific communities," Nicholas Rodopoulos, president of the Hellenic Logistics Association, told Xinhua.

According to the UN findings, large areas of southern Europe are projected to have an increase of 40 to 50 very hot days per year, with significant parts of Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Greece, and Turkey being projected to have as many as 50 to 60 more very hot days per year.

It is estimated that seaports in Greece, the United Kingdom, and Denmark will be affected by 2080, when the number of seaports in EU countries facing inundation risks is expected to increase by 50 percent relative to 2030.

"The climate is not changing or will change; it has already changed, and we'll have to adapt to those changes if we wish to have a resilient transport infrastructure," Alexopoulos warned.

UNECE established a group of experts who are working on the climate change impacts and adaptation for transport networks in 2010.

"For the first time, we put a geographical information system (GIS) in all the critical transport infrastructure...with the projections from IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) on the different climatic factors like precipitation, floods, winds and high temperature," Kostas Alexopoulos, Chief of Transport Facilitation and Economics, Sustainable Transport Division in UNECE explained to Xinhua.

"Now we invite the governments to use this information, to be part of our group of experts and help us identify those areas or locations or those parts of the networks that might be vulnerable in the future to climate change impacts," Alexopoulos said.

The Greek government has put the management of climate change fallout high on its policy agenda.

"We have to move forward with specific infrastructure projects. And we have to look for other sources, such as bringing in the picture renewing our bus fleet with electric fleet, something that we're going to do in the next six months," Konstantinos Karamanlis, Greek Minister of Infrastructure and Transport, told Xinhua.


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