Jan 19, 2013

The impact of extreme weather and climate change on inland waterway transport

Juha Schweighofer
Natural Hazards
  • States that heavy rainfall, in particular in association with snow melt, may lead to floods resulting in suspension of navigation and causing damage to the inland waterway infrastructure as well as the property and health of human beings living in areas exposed to flooding
  • States that long periods of drought may lead to reduced discharge and low water levels, limiting the cargo-carrying capacity of vessels and increasing the specific costs of transportation
  • States that temperatures below zero degrees Celsius over a longer period may cause the appearance of ice on waterways, leading to suspension of navigation and possible damage to infrastructure, for example, buoys
  • Gives an overview of the impact of extreme weather events on inland waterway transport in Europe, focussed on the Rhine–Main–Danube corridor, followed by a discussion on how climate change will change these events and their impacts