MassDOT-FHWA Pilot Project: Climate Change and Extreme Weather Vulnerability Assessments and Adaptation Options for the Central Artery

Members of the research team that led the study on “Climate Change and Extreme Weather Vulnerability Assessments and Adaptation Options for the Central Artery” will receive the 2017 Environmental Excellence Award from the Federal Highways Administration on October 24 at 2:30 p.m. in University Hall, Room 3370.

The team, led by School for the Environment professors Ellen Douglas and Paul Kirshen, completed the first of its kind climate change impacts study on the Central Artery this past year. The Central Artery/Tunnel (CA/T) Vulnerability and Adaptation Assessment, completed in June 2015, created the hydrodynamic Boston Harbor Flood Risk Model (BH-FRM) to identify risk and depth of water resulting from storm surge-induced coastal flooding in the City of Boston under current and future sea level rise and storm surge. Based on the CA/T system’s high sensitivity to flooding and little redundancy built into it, the CA/T study recommended conceptual level adaptation strategies for current and future time horizons.

MassDOT is currently considering the recommendations presented in the report. However, in order to supply adaptation measures sooner, MassDOT is developing an alternate strategy to provide protection to 2030.

https://www.umb.edu/news_events_media/events/federal_highways_administration_award_to_douglas_and_kirshen

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