The resilience of critical infrastructures to natural and or man/made threats is one of the most demanding challenges for society today. Both economic traffic and the day-to-day life of our citizens depend very much on the undisturbed functioning of these infrastructures. Serious malfunctioning and disruptions of these infrastructures may have severe consequences for our economy, our society and for the environment. Developing and maintaining critical infrastructures require major capital investments. Most technical critical infrastructures are to serve for very long lifetimes (50+ years). Hence, future hazards have to be taken into account when considering and designing the infrastructure and its protective measures. At the same time, one needs to prepare for capabilities necessary to mitigate and recover from disruptions when they occur.
Extreme weather due to climate change is one such phenomenon that may cause severe threats to the undisturbed functioning of our critical infrastructures. The last decades show growing trends of more frequent and more extreme weather types, be it in high/low temperatures, periods of drought, precipitation, lightning or storms. Already today, extreme weather and climate changes give evidence of severe challenges to our critical infrastructures. In the foreseeable future, these challenges could become even more demanding. The INTACT project (on the impact of extreme weather on critical infrastructures) will address these challenges and bring together the best of current knowhow and experience in Europe in order to develop and demonstrate good practices in planning and designing protective measures as well as crisis response and recovery capabilities.