(Eastern floods; 02-02; p.5)
But there are solutions to mitigate the effects
of floods which are well-known and don't need be reiterated here.
Most of them are spanning across the field of economic utility
and ecological compatibility.
Using water-ways for container goods e.g. does make sense from
an ecological point of view since it does not overly draw on resources
and thereby reduces carbon dioxide emissions. For utilising the
advantages connected with inland shipping, on the other hand one
needs rivers not too shallow and bends not too narrow. That in
turn leads to higher flow rates and less possibilities for flood
waters to trickle away. A river Danube that allows shipping all
the way e.g. has to be arranged with a riverside largely not inhabited
nor cultivated in order to provide enough space for flood waters.
Alternatively using railways is out of scope of the company's
management concepts possessing the tracks and trains: its profit-making
strategy is orientated towards long distance passenger traffic.
The biggest share of container goods therefore will foreseeably
be transported on roads as is the case now. The costs of this
form of transport are relatively low. But this is made possible
only by a permanent struggle for survival of carrier companies
and according harsh work conditions of the truckers.
Concepts of so-called combined traffic are available from logistics
experts. They suggest to transport goods over long distances between
central trans-shipment centres by train or ship and to do the
short distances to customers by truck. Technical hindrances do
not exist since European norms have been created and engineers
have done their work. Alas, combined traffic has not yet been
promoted nor substantially supported by governments and consequently
has not been an option for most companies.
Thus, to support an economically feasible and
nonetheless ecologically compatible policy is a future task for
governments. It can be achieved only on the European level and
instead of national lobbyism good governance is needed, i.e. co-operation
between administrations. That way the clash of civilisations predicted
at some places might at least be postponed facing the splash of
(End of article)