12.5.8 Energy and transport
A wide variety of adaptation measures are available in the energy sector ranging from the redesign of the energy supply system to the modification of human behaviour (Santos et al., 2002). The sensitivity of European energy systems to climate change could be reduced by enhancing the interconnection capacity of electricity grids and by using more decentralised electric generation systems and local micro grids (Arnell et al., 2005). Another type of adaptation would be to reduce the exposure of energy users and producers to impacts of unfavourable climate through the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, for example by reducing overall energy use. This can be accomplished through various energy conservation measures such as energy-saving building codes and low-electricity standards for new appliances, increasing energy prices and through training and public education. Over the medium to long term, shifting from fossil fuels to renewable energy use will be an effective adaptive measure (Hanson et al., 2006).
Clearly, one aspect of adaptation may be through measures to mitigate emissions from transport through cleaner technologies and adapting behaviour (National Assessment Synthesis Team, 2001; AEAT, 2003; Highways Agency, 2005a). There is clearly a need for capacity building in the response to incidents, risk assessments, developments in maintenance, renewal practice and design standards for new infrastructure (Highways Agency, 2005b; Mayor of London, 2005). Assessment of the costs and benefits of adapting existing infrastructure or raising standards in the design of new vehicles and infrastructure to improve system resilience and reliability to the range of potential impacts should consider the wider economic and social impacts of disruption to the transport system.