In many developing countries, disasters triggered by climate change like landslides can negatively impact their infrastructure, livelihood, and economy. And because of inadequate resources or low-adaptive capacity, it would take some time for them to bounce back, unlike developed countries.
According to an ICEM article, the construction of Nepal’s roads and highways, especially alongside its forests, mountainous terrains, and rivers basins, can trigger landslides and erosion. Climate change-induced monsoons and heavy rainfalls increase the threats of disasters.
Nepal launched a Geohazard risk management project and resilient road asset management to cope with these risks on their critical infrastructure.
The article describes:
“The project will review existing landslide risk data; identify hotspot areas, early warning systems, and relevant mitigation measures; and support institutions and organizations. It will advise on-going projects, such as Nepal: Road Sector Development Project and Nepal-India Trade and Transport Project. The project will further assess and advise the Department of Roads on considering climate change risk and earthquake mitigation into road infrastructure development. Lastly, the project will build upon earlier hazard mapping and data collection.”
Additionally, it will expand from the local area or site where the landslide took place and include upstream and other slope areas’ activities that could potentially contribute to the landslide event.
To achieve the project’s objectives, it will apply vulnerability assessments on specific roads, determine climate risks and identify the high impact or hot spot areas and activities to mitigate threats. Findings and data will then be sent to their Department of Roads and relevant agencies to assist with their mitigation plans.
The following are the main tasks under the project:
- conducting disaster and climate risk assessments for transport infrastructures against river flood and landslides,
- developing a Decision Support System to aid mitigation planning,
- assessing current and future network costs in disaster events,
- preparing guidance notes for interventions, resilience, and cost-efficiency of road networks,
- preparing a risk mitigation plan, and
- disseminating climate change risk assessment for the staff to use.
Risk assessments are crucial in infrastructure management. Deficient, inadequate, or underdeveloped infrastructure are significant obstacles to a country’s economic growth. Studies have shown that investments in infrastructure contribute to a country’s economic growth.
As with the Nepal geohazard risk assessment and disaster reduction project, the government aims to boost the resilience of their critical infrastructure and ensure that they continue to provide services to the community and support the country’s economic development.