ICE Scotland State of the Nation Report 2020: Climate Ready Infrastructure

This report both demonstrates the urgent requirement for ‘climate ready’ infrastructure in Scotland and sets out the benefits that this type of infrastructure can deliver.

Scotland’s climate is changing. From flooding to wildfires, our infrastructure is facing pressures that, for the most part, it wasn’t designed to withstand.

Without urgent action we risk a series of infrastructure failures that would hurt the economy, be costly to resolve, and threaten the safety and wellbeing of infrastructure users.

We must act quickly to adapt and retrofit our infrastructure so it is resilient to these impacts and can continue to perform. We must make it climate ready.

This report has detailed the bigger opportunity to be captured from bringing forward climate ready infrastructure:

  • We have set out not just the economic imperative for resilient infrastructure, but the social and environmental benefits in doing so too.
  • Independent analysis has shown that climate ready infrastructure would meet all the NPF outcomes as well as supporting the Four Capitals in the Scottish Government’s Wellbeing Economy Monitor.
  • Case studies have detailed real and project specific examples of what we can expect from climate ready infrastructure projects and the detriments of assets that lack resiliency in the face of climate impacts.
  • As Scottish Government now considers a new Investment Hierarchy and Impact Assessment model the need to position climate readiness as a key pillar of infrastructure decision-making is clearer than ever before.

To capture these benefits, we must act with urgency, establish an Infrastructure Adaptation Task Force, Measure Value and align existing policy levers. Infrastructure underpins every aspect of Scotland’s economy and society. We have a duty to ensure that our assets can best serve us all by delivering infrastructure that is resilient, sustainable and supports our wellbeing.

With decisive action, collaborative working and sound stewardship of our infrastructure assets, Scotland can deliver economic, social and environmental value through infrastructure that is fit for the future, infrastructure that is climate ready.

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