Regional Environmental Change

, Volume 18, Issue 8, pp 2211–2225 | Cite as

Climate change impacts on critical international transportation assets of Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS): the case of Jamaica and Saint Lucia

  • Isavela Ν. MonioudiEmail author
  • Regina Asariotis
  • Austin Becker
  • Cassandra Bhat
  • Danielle Dowding-Gooden
  • Miguel Esteban
  • Luc Feyen
  • Lorenzo Mentaschi
  • Antigoni Nikolaou
  • Leonard Nurse
  • Willard Phillips
  • David Α.Υ. Smith
  • Mizushi Satoh
  • Ulric O’Donnell Trotz
  • Adonis F. Velegrakis
  • Evangelos Voukouvalas
  • Michalis I. Vousdoukas
  • Robert Witkop
Original Article


This contribution presents an assessment of the potential vulnerabilities to climate variability and change (CV & C) of the critical transportation infrastructure of Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS). It focuses on potential operational disruptions and coastal inundation forced by CV & C on four coastal international airports and four seaports in Jamaica and Saint Lucia which are critical facilitators of international connectivity and socioeconomic development. Impact assessments have been carried out under climatic conditions forced by a 1.5 °C specific warming level (SWL) above pre-industrial levels, as well as for different emission scenarios and time periods in the twenty-first century. Disruptions and increasing costs due to, e.g., more frequent exceedance of high temperature thresholds that could impede transport operations are predicted, even under the 1.5 °C SWL, advocated by the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) and reflected as an aspirational goal in the Paris Climate Agreement. Dynamic modeling of the coastal inundation under different return periods of projected extreme sea levels (ESLs) indicates that the examined airports and seaports will face increasing coastal inundation during the century. Inundation is projected for the airport runways of some of the examined international airports and most of the seaports, even from the 100-year extreme sea level under 1.5 °C SWL. In the absence of effective technical adaptation measures, both operational disruptions and coastal inundation are projected to increasingly affect all examined assets over the course of the century.


Climate change SIDS Caribbean International transport Extreme sea levels Dynamic flood modeling 



The study benefitted from valuable discussions with participants at two national workshops, in Saint Lucia (24–26 May 2017) and in Jamaica (30 May–1 June 2017), and a regional workshop in Barbados (5–7 December 2017) which are gratefully acknowledged.

Funding information

The authors gratefully acknowledge the support received under UN Development Account Project 1415O ( Also acknowledged with thanks is the support by the Disaster Risk Management Unit of the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission.

Supplementary material

10113_2018_1360_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.3 mb)
ESM 1 (PDF 1.28 MB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Isavela Ν. Monioudi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Regina Asariotis
    • 2
  • Austin Becker
    • 3
  • Cassandra Bhat
    • 4
  • Danielle Dowding-Gooden
    • 5
  • Miguel Esteban
    • 6
  • Luc Feyen
    • 7
  • Lorenzo Mentaschi
    • 7
  • Antigoni Nikolaou
    • 1
  • Leonard Nurse
    • 8
  • Willard Phillips
    • 9
  • David Α.Υ. Smith
    • 5
  • Mizushi Satoh
    • 10
  • Ulric O’Donnell Trotz
    • 11
  • Adonis F. Velegrakis
    • 1
  • Evangelos Voukouvalas
    • 7
  • Michalis I. Vousdoukas
    • 7
  • Robert Witkop
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Marine SciencesUniversity of the AegeanMytileneGreece
  2. 2.Policy and Legislation Section, Division on Technology and LogisticsUNCTADGenevaSwitzerland
  3. 3.Department of Marine AffairsUniversity of Rhode IslandKingstonUSA
  4. 4.ICFMiami BeachUSA
  5. 5.Smith Warner International Ltd.KingstonJamaica
  6. 6.Faculty of Civil and Environmental EngineeringWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan
  7. 7.Joint Research Centre (JRC), Directorate for Space, Security and Migration Disaster Risk Management UnitEuropean CommissionIspraItaly
  8. 8.Faculty of Science and TechnologyUniversity of the West IndiesBridgetownBarbados
  9. 9.Sustainable Development and Disaster UnitUNECLACPort-of-SpainTrinidad and Tobago
  10. 10.UNDP Barbados and the OECSBridgetownBarbados
  11. 11.Caribbean Community Climate Change CentreBelmopanBelize

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