Innovation That Matters

Jamaica is vulnerable to climate threats such as hotter temperatures, drought, sea level rises, and flooding | Photo source Mike Erskine on Unsplash

A new tool for identifying infrastructure at risk from climate change


The Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment has developed a platform to help countries focus investment on areas that build climate resilience

Spotted: As the earth heats up, many areas will face increasing risk of infrastructure failure. Networks such as energy and water supplies, transportation, and medicine are all particularly vulnerable. A new platform that identifies those areas of risk has been developed with support and research from the Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment (CCRI), the UK Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office, the Green Climate Fund, and the University of Oxford. The tool aims to provide information to allow planners to make more informed infrastructure risk assessments.

The platform, called the Systemic Risk Assessment Tool (SRAT) offers features that help guide the prioritisation of investment for climate resilience. Features of the tool include high resolution and visual analysis to accurately identify hotspots of vulnerability across critical infrastructure, and models to assess the practical impacts of severe weather events on specific services. The tool also helps to accurately calculate the damage and economic losses from future climate risks, giving decision-makers and investors the confidence to prioritise infrastructure that will be more resilient to future climate impacts. The platform is open source — allowing the methodology to be used worldwide.

The CCRI was launched during the UN Climate Action Summit in 2019, with the goal of mobilising the global private finance industry to “help improve resilience in infrastructure by integrating physical climate risks into mainstream financial and investment decision-making for projects.”

The SRAT tool is being launched in Jamaica, which will act as a pilot country for the project. Jamaica was chosen as the country’s infrastructure and economic assets are highly exposed to extreme weather events that are expected to increase in intensity and frequency. The predictive technology used to underpin the SRAT tool is based on methods developed at Oxford University.

It is clear that climate resilience is not going to be built by the public sector alone – tackling infrastructure improvements is going to require input from innvoators. Luckily, we are seeing a growing number of innovations aimed at exactly this sector. Those recently covered here at Springwise include a nature-backed financial instrument and the use of AI to predict transport delays

Written By: Lisa Magloff



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