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The Physical Climate Risk Assessment Methodology (PCRAM)
PCRAM allows asset owners and operators to invest strategically and confidently to protect their assets and businesses from climate change.
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PCRAM: helping you to invest in more resilient infrastructure

Infrastructure systems must become resilient against climate change if they are to be sustainable.

Owners, operators and investors need to have confidence that infrastructure can withstand and recover from the extreme weather that is becoming increasingly frequent, in a way that minimises disruption and repair costs and protects its performance. Users need to know that they can rely on the vital services these systems provide.

To hear more about PCRAM, and what it means for you and your organisation, please click here.

Click here to view PCRAM’s guidance document.

Organisations that fail to protect themselves, their customers and society from harm resulting from climate impacts are exposed to a rising level of financial and reputational risk. Conversely, those that build climate resilience will find opportunities: by withstanding, responding to and recovering rapidly from climate impacts, they will maintain operational continuity and strengthen their competitive edge.

And yet, investment in infrastructure resilience lags well behind what is needed. Part of the reason for this has been a lack of evidence about where and how to invest. But this is now changing, with tools and data available to help measure and manage risk.

We can assist you in planning and delivering programmes that help protect your services, your customers and your revenue, gaining maximum value from your investment while doing so. Our pioneering approach quantifies your exposure to material physical climate risks, prioritises those risks for investment, identifies the resilience options that will deliver the best whole-life value, to ensure a sustainable infrastructure long into the uncertain future.

Introducing PCRAM

Since 2020, we have been working with the Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment to help provide infrastructure owners and operators with the tools they need to invest in resilience with confidence and certainty.

The result of this work is the Physical Climate Risk Assessment Methodology (PCRAM).

PCRAM is the first methodology of its kind that brings together climate science, asset management, resilience practitioners and financiers to assess, design and quantify the resilience needs of infrastructure assets.

It can be used to identify material physical climate risks to an organisation’s assets and build resilience to improve performance and protect revenue. PCRAM helps decision-makers understand benefit-to-cost ratio, target investment, and plan programmes of investment that align with existing organisational and regulatory investment cycles.

The methodology can be applied to any physical asset or portfolio of assets, for any set of climate hazards. It is designed to enable owners and investors alike to develop their level of maturity in managing climate risks over time.

PCRAM can help you:

  • Audit climate data
  • Assess critical assets
  • Identify resilience options
  • Analyse financial and performance impact

PCRAM allows asset owners and operators to invest strategically and confidently to protect their assets and businesses from climate change.

Risk disclosure and management

As mandatory climate-related disclosures become more prevalent in infrastructure, organisations need to act now to set up the systems and processes to quantify their exposure to physical climate risks.

The Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) was established by the global Financial Stability Board in recognition of the threat posed by climate change to capital and the worldwide financial system. It was tasked to develop a reporting framework that would help investors understand their exposure to risk and plan investments – or disinvestments – accordingly. TCFD reporting has already become mandatory for large companies in Canada, Hong Kong, New Zealand Switzerland and the UK; while China, the EU, the USA and other G7 leading economies say they plan to adopt the framework.

TCFD requires companies to demonstrate understanding of the climate risks they face, how severely they could be impacted, and the financial consequences. They must also spell out how they plan to mitigate their exposure to risk. Companies that fail to adequately quantify risk and manage it will see investor confidence ebb away – and potentially the confidence of other stakeholders too, including government sponsors, regulators, civil society organisations and customers.

PCRAM dovetails with TCFD reporting, by helping organisations to both understand and quantify the climate risks they face, and to prioritise them as part of a climate risk management strategy.

Opportunities

Insight and data

PCRAM cross references data on your infrastructure assets with localised climate data, helping you understand the probability and severity of impacts. Our team combines climate science with engineering expertise rooted in asset delivery, asset management and performance optimisation. The result is practical, costed recommendations for adaptation to safeguard operational continuity and help you meet your strategic goals.

Investment

The recommendations arising from a PCRAM assessment will be aligned with your capital, operational and asset management investment cycles, helping you make climate resilience part and parcel of your regular business and financial planning. Work to improve resilience can be carried out to achieve wider performance improvements, resulting in less downtime and reduced repair and recovery costs, adding up to better financial performance and greater returns on investment. PCRAM provides asset owners and operators with the clear business case for investment by providing analysis of the impact on internal rate of return.

Consequence of failure

When critical infrastructure fails, the ramifications are severe. PCRAM allows infrastructure owners, operators and investors to stay on top of their critical risks and take adequate action.

Strategy and risk

Like many other risks, climate risk is dynamic. Climate science can forecast likely scenarios, but the pace of change and the local manifestations will always be uncertain. Measuring climate risks using PCRAM can help inform the planning of adaptation pathways that will allow for flexibility in the type, scale and speed of response.

What we can do for you

PCRAM risk assessment

We can help you identify the climate risks to your infrastructure assets. By combining localised climate data with our expertise in asset management, we can give you a detailed understanding of precisely where and how your organisation is at risk and align investment to your asset management objectives.

Resilience options: costed and designed

Our resilience practitioners, cost consultants and civil engineers can identify, cost and design the resilience interventions your asset requires and analyse the implications on performance, lifecycle and maintenance. Once the decision has been made, we can help with procurement, supervise construction and monitor the performance of the intervention.

Quantifying climate risk and resilience

We can help you quantify the risks to your infrastructure through impact on performance, lifecycle and maintenance, which are then used to evaluate financial impact. We can then help you analyse how resilience interventions change this financial impact and conduct cost-benefit testing analysis to identify preferred solutions.

Contact

Nikki van Dijk
Associate climate resilience advisor
nikki.vandijk@mottmac.com

William Phillips
Infrastructure advisory, climate change, and sustainability senior consultant
william.phillips@mottmac.com

Read our related articles

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Climate adaptation: identifying the investment opportunity

COP26 – Cut and adapt

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