The Resilience of Sea Port - Good Practices

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The Resilience of Sea Port - Good Practices

The maritime transportation network is one of the critical infrastructure systems whose disruption significantly impacts the economy, security, and overall well-being of society

Lessons learned from geo-hazards like earthquakes, tsunami, liquefaction (e.g. Port-au-Prince, Haiti, 2010; Maule, Chile, 2010; Tohoku, Japan, 2011), storms and severe climate events and other natural disasters due to climate change have dramatically demonstrated the vulnerability of seaport structures and the severe damage that can be caused (e.g. Port of New York, Port of New Jersey and surrounding communities, 2012; Los Angeles, 2005; Caribbean ports).


These fragile and critical nurseries for port infrastructure and the environment demand a high level of protection from the effects of multi-hazards. For example, the poor seismic performance exhibited by seaport structures has launched research activities to set up methodologies to assess seismic risk in port areas and to develop technical recommendations for both the proper seismic design of new maritime structures and appropriate retrofitting of existing ones. In addition, since 2006 International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) and others took initiatives to identify climate change impacts on sea ports.

The IAPH 2009 survey results clearly demonstrated the need for intervention and preparedness for future climate and extreme weather events (e.g. 98 ports across the globe interviewed, 86% felt that the international port community needs to strongly address climate risk management by incorporating it into master plans and other contingency plans).

To keep this sector efficient and resilient, seaport decision-makers must anticipate natural disasters, organisational factors, technological factors, marine and land access factors, network factors, economic factors and human factors in the current and future operation and sustainability. Port systems are probably best described as complex technological and sociological environments which are exposed to a very diverse range of risks. Moreover, organisational factors can be described as compound factors, which add to the impact of any port disruption – or, if well managed, such as through business continuity and resilience planning – act against lasting impact. Furthermore, the evaluation of damage and risk scenarios represent a milestone in the development of mitigation and prevention strategies, plans of intervention and post disaster emergency management. This study focus on identifying good practices for the sea port resilience to disaster and climate resilience.