Mapping climate risks in South East Europe

Adaptation moves centre stage in the development of transport infrastructure

October 8, 2016 | By Jerome Simpson

Representatives of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Department for Road Management; the University of Prishtina; the Ministry for Environment and Spatial Planning; the Regional Cooperation Council; the Regional Enviroinmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe (REC); the South East European Transport Observatory; the Kosovo* Environmental Protection Agency; GAP; and various consultants came together to discuss climate impacts on the Route 7 corridor between Merdare and Pristina, Kosovo*.

The group determined that infrastructure between Pristina and Lupci will be at greatest risk from embankment and infrastructure collapse and mudslides caused by flash flooding, while those around Lupci and Lluzhan and Podujeva will be at risk from prolonged periods of heavy rain. The experts also flagged their concern about road damage caused by prolonged periods of drought during winter. Among the adaptation measures agreed were clay embankments and artificial flood barriers, afforestation, stormwater drainage, and the enforcement of access restrictions for heavy-goods vehicles. A recommendation was also made for a guidebook on innovative technological solutions for decisionmakers.

The workshop was the first in a series of five taking place under the "ClimaCor II" project, which involves testing a refined version of a methodology developed for the assessment of climate impacts on international passenger and freight transport corridors. The new methodology is being tested on a section of the Orient/East-Med Corridor in South East Europe where it crosses Serbia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and Kosovo*, as well as a stretch of the TEN-T Rhine-Danube waterway where it traverses Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The two sections are used for conveying both passengers and freight.

Completed corridor assessments, accomplished via the workshops and expert surveys, will provide better quality of data and analysis on infrastructure development that takes into account the prospect of more adverse weather conditions and recommends various adaptation measures. ClimaCor II is funded by the Regional Cooperation Council in support of SEE 2020 Strategy implementation.

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.