Westconnex postpones planning for climate change until “detailed design” phase

(Ed: The EIS was required to consider the impact of changes in rainfall due to climate change on the project. It was also required to carry out a risk assessment which includes the risks of climate change. We have already published researcher Owen’s Price contribution on Greenhouse Gas Emissions . In this post, Dr Jennifer Hamilton – Adjunct Lecturer, New York University and visiting fellow at UNSW critiques the approach to climate change taken by engineering firm AECOM in its EIS.) 

Strategies to manage climate change risks put off to “detailed planning” stage

The Climate Change Risk Assessment portion of the M5 EIS conjures an image of a durable roadway system withstanding the tests of a changing climate. While the document incorporates climate change into the risk profile of the project, it ultimately recommends very little in the way of direct risk management strategies other than the “consideration” of various potential risks in the next phase of the design process and a few non-binding suggestions as to what these design adaptations might look like (see pages Chapter 25-9 & 25-10).

20151206_West COnnexTrees#2_0006Paperbark trees in Euston Road, Alexandria will be replaced by a widened road to cater for thousands of extra polluting cars and trucks. Photo by Lorrie Graham

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