Identification and Evaluation of Major Issues Involving the Impact of Global Climate Change on Transportation Systems

There is a dearth of published studies that deal with the implications of long-range climate change in regard to transportation systems. This proposal aims to identify the significant issues likely to be induced by the expected global climate change in so far as transportation systems in the USA are concerned. Not only will the direct climate change effects on engineered transportation infrastructure components be identified and promising solutions suggested, but a clear roadmap will be established, using the Los Angeles transportation network as a template, which will encompass the numerous tasks that are needed for the modeling framework of a useful simulation tool for decision makers. Such a modeling tool will be capable of dealing with a variety of inputs, corresponding to different existing or needed databases, that encapsulate the probabilistic nature of the many uncertain parameters that influence the operation of extended and interacting transportation networks. A significant output of the proposed research effort (when all its planned phases are eventually implemented) is to determine the relative sensitivity of the simulation model to various controlling (uncertain) parameters that characterize the evolution of traffic and goods flow within regional networks, or throughout national networks, thus providing decision makers with advance planning options so that they may start collecting the types of relevant data whose availability will reduce the uncertainty in quantifying specific decision variables, and hence improve their ability to make optimal policy decisions to insure a resilient transportation system