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Climate change risk to global port operations
Izaguirre, C.; Losada, I.J.; Camus, P.; Vigh, J.L.; Stenek, V. (2021). Climate change risk to global port operations. Nat. Clim. Chang. 11(1): 14-20.
In: Nature Climate Change. Nature Publishing Group: London. ISSN 1758-678X; e-ISSN 1758-6798, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Izaguirre, C.
  • Losada, I.J.
  • Camus, P.
  • Vigh, J.L.
  • Stenek, V.

    The ports sector is critical to global transport and trade. Climate change may compromise port operations, resulting in an increase in operational shutdowns and subsequent economic losses. Here, we present an analysis of historical global risk across the operations of 2,013 ports worldwide and the impacts under a high-end warming scenario, considering atmospheric and marine hazards, industry established operational thresholds, exposure and vulnerability. Increased coastal flooding and overtopping due to sea level rise, as well as the heat stress impacts of higher temperatures, are the main contributors to amplified risk. Ports located in the Pacific Islands, Caribbean Sea and Indian Ocean appear to be at extremely high risk by 2100, whereas those in the African Mediterranean and the Arabian Peninsula (Persian Gulf and Red Sea) are expected to experience very high risk. Estimating risks at the global scale cannot capture site-level details, but these results provide a benchmark for further research and decision-making.

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