Assessing Vulnerability of Water Conveyance Infrastructure from a Changing Climate in the Context of a Changing Landscape

November 13th, 2014

Presenter: Michael Simpson, Co-Director, Antioch Center for Climate Preparedness and Community Resilience; Chair, Department of Environmental Studies
AICP Credit

This webinar presented how to assess the vulnerability of a community’s road crossings and storm water systems to increased run-off events. The approaches presented here have been tested and refined from applied research over the last ten years, which in part was funded by NOAA and US EPA, and carried out for communities from rural, peri-urban and urban watersheds in New England and the upper Midwest.

An assessment protocol to target specific vulnerable location within a community due to increases in run-off was the main focus of this webinar. How to identify catchments at risk, as well as determine what would be needed to build peak-flow capacity into the storm water system was also covered. Once the vulnerable locations are known, a prioritization approach to determine which road crossings are deemed the most vulnerable is the next step in the protocol. This was followed by specific strategies to mitigate the future impact of increased run-off, as well as discussion of avoiding maladaptive approaches. Finally, marginal cost and avoided damage costs analyses was introduced as an important step to be done in conjunction with any storm water vulnerability assessment.

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