Caltrans prepares for climate change impacts to California’s transportation system

Caltrans will complete vulnerability assessments in each of its 12 districts to help protect the future of the transportation system.

Caltrans will conduct region-specific climate change vulnerability assessments for each of Caltrans’ 12 districts to help identify how climate change will impact California's transportation system.

Caltrans has already released four new assessments focusing on Central California and Orange County and the risks posed to their assets by wildfires, extreme temperatures, sea-level rise and coastal bluff erosion.

“Too many Californians have already experienced the effects of climate change including fires, flooding and mudslides impacting all modes of travel, the erosion of coastal highways and dead and dying trees falling near roadways,” said Caltrans Director Toks Omishakin. “No matter how you move about the state, you rely on some form of transportation to get you where you need to be. Caltrans is taking steps now to fully understand the reality we’re facing and ensure the long-term health and vitality of our vast transportation system for current and future generations.”

These assessments cover 21 counties including those in the Sacramento region, Central California, mountain regions and Orange County. Interactive maps created by Caltrans help demonstrate the expected impacts of climate change on the state’s transportation system.

These new vulnerability assessments will help guide the department toward planning and investment strategies that lessen the impacts of climate change and save taxpayers money.

Caltrans’ work in protecting the transportation system requires collaboration with partners and stakeholders. The department is sharing the reports’ data with local, regional, state and federal agencies. Together, they will work toward establishing a more resilient transportation system.

Caltrans has completed all but two of the assessments for the state. Completed assessments are available here.

Upon completion of all 12 assessments, Caltrans will develop adaptation reports for each region that outlines how climate change resiliency will be fully integrated into future transportation decisions.

More in Management