Assessing climate change impact on asphalt binder grade selection and its implications

Surya T. Swarna, Kamal Hossain, Harshdutta Pandya, Yusuf A. Mehta

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

18 Scopus citations


Anthropogenic climate change is having and will continue to have unpredictable effects on Canadian weather. Trends in average annual temperatures have been rapidly increasing over the last 50 years. The severe climatic variations in Canada are in line with global changes in climate occurring as a result of increased greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere. Under the current CO2 emission scenarios, scientists predict the climate trends to further intensify in the near future. It is well known that asphalt binder is highly sensitive to climate factors. For this reason, reviewing asphalt binder grade is a vital step, and can help decelerate pavement deterioration. The objective of this study was to assess the change in asphalt binder grade for the future climate and to determine the influence of change in binder grade on the performance of pavements in Canada. To achieve this, the analysis was carried out in five phases. In the first phase, statistically downscaled climate change models were gathered from the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium database. In the second phase, the temperature and precipitation data were extracted for the selected locations in southern Canada. In the third phase, the asphalt binder grade was determined for future climate data. In the fourth phase, the pavement materials, traffic, and structural data were collected from the Long-Term Pavement Performance database. Lastly, the pavement performance with the base binder and the upgraded binder were assessed using AASHTOware Mechanistic–Empirical Pavement Design. The results reemphasize the necessity of upgrading the asphalt binder grade in various provinces of Canada.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTransportation Research Record
PublisherSAGE Publications Ltd
Number of pages14
StatePublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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