Forecasting infrastructure resilience to climate change

Resilience of the UK transport infrastructure network can be expressed as the imbalance between the physical condition of the network and the transport demands the network experiences. Forecasting changes of resilience in the long term (e.g. the 2050s) requires a structured, multi-disciplinary approach. The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council funded Futurenet project developed a model architecture to formalise such an approach and this paper addresses one component: the assessment of the influence of physical processes on asset condition. This requires the development of new, integrated physical-based models that respond to detailed inputs of forecast weather events (e.g. UK Climate Projections 2009). The results are plotted onto the infrastructure network for visualisation. Subsequent combination with user demand will then enable determination of network resilience at a range of spatial scales. The project has highlighted the need for better datasets, more sophisticated physical-based models and further analyses of complex feedbacks and interactions between physical processes and also with user behaviour.