Increased costs to US pavement infrastructure from future temperature rise
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Inst Environm
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherNATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
CitationUnderwood, B. S., Guido, Z., Gudipudi, P., & Feinberg, Y. (2017). Increased costs to US pavement infrastructure from future temperature rise. Nature Climate Change, 7(10), 704.
JournalNATURE CLIMATE CHANGE
Rights© 2017 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature. All rights reserved.
Collection InformationThis item from the UA Faculty Publications collection is made available by the University of Arizona with support from the University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
AbstractRoadway design aims to maximize functionality, safety, and longevity(1,2). The materials used for construction, however, are often selected on the assumption of a stationary climate(1,3). Anthropogenic climate change may therefore result in rapid infrastructure failure and, consequently, increased maintenance costs, particularly for paved roads where temperature is a key determinant for material selection. Here, we examine the economic costs of projected temperature changes on asphalt roads across the contiguous United States using an ensemble of 19 global climate models forced with RCP 4.5 and 8.5 scenarios. Over the past 20 years, stationary assumptions have resulted in incorrect material selection for 35% of 799 observed locations. With warming temperatures, maintaining the standard practice for material selection is estimated to add approximately US$13.6, US$19.0 and US$21.8 billion to pavement costs by 2010, 2040 and 2070 under RCP4.5, respectively, increasing to US$14.5, US$26.3 and US$35.8 for RCP8.5. These costs will disproportionately affect local municipalities that have fewer resources to mitigate impacts. Failing to update engineering standards of practice in light of climate change therefore significantly threatens pavement infrastructure in the United States.
Note6 month embargo; published online: 18 September 2017
VersionFinal accepted manuscript