Scottish climate change adaptation programme 2019-2024: consultation draft

We want to hear your views on Scotland's new five-year climate change adaptation programme to be launched in autumn 2019.

Outcome 4: Our society's supporting systems are resilient to climate change

Sub-Outcome 4.1: The interdependencies of Scotland's infrastructure assets, systems and sectors are understood, and the risk of cascading failures is managed

Infrastructure networks do not operate in isolation. If one network becomes damaged or fails, it could lead to cascading failures throughout the wider infrastructural system. In order to protect our supporting systems from the effects of climate change, it is important that we consider the interdependencies inherent in the system.

Policy Name

Description and Link to Adaptation

Electricity and Gas Networks Vision Statement (due February 2019)

Alongside the Scottish Government's Energy Strategy, the Electricity and Gas Networks Vision Statement (due February 2019), will take a more detailed look at the role and evolution of Scotland's energy networks. This will include the ways in which Scotland's energy network will need to change to remain resilient and effective, to support our energy and climate change goals.

National Transport Strategy (Refresh)

Scotland's National Transport Strategy sets out the high level policy for transport in Scotland over the next 20 years. This Strategy takes into account targets for decarbonisation of transport, accessibility, and elimination of poverty. This aligns the Strategy with broader objectives of the Scottish Government.

The Strategy states that: "Adaptation of the strategic transport network to cope with effects of climate change is also vital to ensure the continued health of the Scottish economy." The National Transport Strategy promotes walking, cycling, public transport and bike, car and ride sharing in preference to single occupancy car use. We are investing in a fully sustainable transport network, cleaning up, joining up and raising the visibility of the full range of transport options whilst encouraging people to think about how they make their journeys and supporting the development of quality place-making for Scotland's communities.

The Strategic Transport Projects Review

The Strategic Transport Projects Review (STPR), published in December 2008, sets out the Scottish Government's 29 transport investment priorities over the period to 2032. To be reviewed after publication of National Transport Strategy refresh.

ScotRail Franchise

The ScotRail franchise operates around 2,300 train services each day and delivers over 93 million passenger journeys per year. It is the single biggest contract let by Scottish Ministers, worth a total value of over £7 billion over 10 years.

Scottish Road Network Landslides Study and Implementation Report

Transport Scotland published the Scottish Road Network Landslides Study in 2005, following severe road closures after landslides in the previous year. In 2009, we published an Implementation Report and we continue to study landslides in the country. Landslides affect more rural and more vulnerable parts of the country, and climate change will increase the likelihood of landslides. This report explains what landslides are, how they can be assessed in terms of the hazards they create and the exposure to road users. It identifies areas of high hazard that currently exist in Scotland and makes recommendations as to how the future detailed assessment of the Scottish road network could be undertaken and the management approaches which could be adopted to mitigate the effects.

Sub-Outcome 4.2: Scotland's critical national infrastructure, including essential services, is resilient to climate change

Within the sectors of supporting systems, there is a sub-category known as Critical National Infrastructure, where the loss or compromise of these systems would have a major detrimental impact on the availability or integrity of essential services, leading to severe economic or social consequences. As climate change increases the severity of storms and likelihood of floods, it is important that our critical national infrastructure and lifeline services are resilient to these effects.

Policy Name

Description and Link to Adaptation

Electricity and Gas System Security and Flexibility

UK wide electricity and gas networks are reserved to the UK Government. The Scottish Government works closely with the UK Government, electricity network operators and owners to ensure the resilience of Scotland's energy networks (to climate change and other factors), and their restoration in the event of a nationwide system failure and power loss.

Scottish Road Network - Climate Change Study (2005) and Implementation Plan (2008)

The Scottish Road Network - Climate Change Study and Implementation Plan gives direct recommendations to adapt the Scottish road network to cope with climate change. This study and implementation plan was updated following UK Climate Projections 2009 and consideration is being given to update following the UK Climate Projections 2018.

Transport Scotland winter service

Transport Scotland winter service operations allow the safe movement of users of the trunk road network and minimizes delays and disruption to users caused by snow or ice.

Scottish Trunk Road Network Asset Management Policy

The trunk road and motorway network is 3,507 km (2,179 miles) long, including slip roads and roundabouts. It has a gross asset value of over £20.8 billion and represents 6% of the total Scottish road network. It carries 35% of all traffic and 60% of heavy goods vehicles. The trunk road network is a fundamental part of the transport system in Scotland, and it is essential that it is maintained to the highest possible standard with the resources available. We will enhance, manage and maintain a resilient transport network with reliable journey times and enhanced connections which promotes building and sustaining economic growth.

Water Infrastructure

As proposed in the Programme for Government 2018, Scottish Water will invest around £600 million in Scotland's water infrastructure, providing 1.35 billion litres of fresh, high quality drinking water every day, improving quality and resilience, and treating our wastewater before returning it safely to the environment. We are consulting on the priorities for future investment by Scottish Water in the regulatory period 2021-27 and beyond. Among significant issues that must be addressed in the need to revise the approach to the management of surface and storm water. Ageing assets, population growth and climate change will all pose challenges. By working together, Scottish Water, local authorities and others can develop approaches to drainage which will reduce the burden on the sewerage network, reducing the need for costly new infrastructure and reducing flood risk. By retaining more water in rivers and soils, we can improve the environment and support biodiversity while increasing leisure and activity potential and take steps to join the international trend towards Blue-Green cities. We will build on examples of work underway in Glasgow and elsewhere to establish new pilots of this approach.

Sub-Outcome 4.3: Scotland's other non-critical infrastructure is adaptable to climate change

There are thirteen national infrastructure sectors which work together to deliver essential services. They include: Chemical, Civil Nuclear, Communication, Defence, Emergency Services, Energy, Finance, Food, Government, Health, Space, Transport and Water. Not all of these services are fully devolved, many remain reserved to the UK Government. It is important that all infrastructure networks and assets, not just the critical national systems, are adaptable to the effects of the changing climate.

Policy Name

Description and Link to Adaptation

Active Travel Targets

The Active Travel vision enables walking and cycling to be the most popular mode of travel for short, everyday journeys. We want to make Scotland's towns and cities friendlier, safer and more accessible. Active Travel is fundamental to the development of a sustainable travel network and a key priority for the Programme for Government and the budget was doubled in 2018-19. Climate change will increase disruption to network affecting the ability of the population to access active travel options. The Scottish Government has doubled its investment in active travel, improving Scotland's active travel infrastructure and as a result its ability to adapt to the changing climate.

Reaching 100% programme

The Reaching 100% programme will deliver superfast broadband access to 100% of homes and business in Scotland. Connectivity is a vital part of our national infrastructure. Businesses depend on it to improve productivity, support customers and open new markets. Fibre broadband is generally more resilient than copper. Fibre has the potential to allow businesses and individuals more flexibility to adapt to climate change by supporting remote working and reducing the need to travel during extreme weather events.

Scottish 4G Infill Programme

The S4GI programme's aim is to deliver 4G infrastructure and services to selected mobile "not spots" in Scotland. Greater access to 4G has the potential to allow businesses and individuals more flexibility to adapt to climate change by supporting remote working and reducing the need to travel during extreme weather events.

Supporting Systems - Adaptation Behaviours:

1. Get involved in community energy. Having a diverse range of local energy sources can help increase resilience to extreme weather and disruption of energy supplies.

2. Conserve water. Increasing temperatures and lower rainfall in summer months may lead to water scarcity. Simple steps like using a water butt for rainwater harvesting and gardening, and not leaving taps running can help.

3. Know your transport options. Being knowledgeable about alternative transport routes can make it easier to deal with disruption. If you can, choose to work from home if extreme weather is forecast.

4. Take care of your drains. Keeping your surface water drains free from leaves, litter and debris can speed up the drainage process. Be mindful about the items you flush down the toilet or put down the sink.

Associated Risks (from the UK Climate Change Risk Assessment 2017)

In1: Risks of cascading failures from interdependent infrastructure networks

In2: Risks to infrastructure services from river, surface water and groundwater flooding

In3: Risks to infrastructure services from coastal flooding and erosion

In4: Risks of sewer flooding due to heavy rainfall

In5: Risks to bridges and pipelines from high river flows and bank erosion

In6: Risks to transport networks from slope and embankment failure

In7: Risks to hydroelectric generation from low or high river flows

In8: Risks to subterranean and surface infrastructure from subsidence

In9: Risks to public water supplies from drought and low river flows

In10: Risks to electricity generation from drought and low river flows

In11: Risks to energy, transport and ICT infrastructure from high winds and lightning

In12: Risks to offshore infrastructure from storms and high waves

In13: Risks to transport, digital and energy infrastructure from extreme heat

In14: Potential benefits to water, transport, digital and energy infrastructure from reduced extreme cold events

PB2: Risks to passengers from high temperatures on public transport

PB13: Risks to health from poor water quality.

PB14: Risk of household water supply interruptions



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