Port Réunion

Adapting a major Indian Ocean seaport to climate change

Located on the Asia-Africa axis, Port Réunion enjoys a strategic position within the southern hemisphere in terms of international trade. It also plays a key role for the island, with 97% of incoming goods passing through its docks. Having embarked on a sustainable approach several years ago, Port Réunion is now working with Artelia to adapt to climate change.


Since 2014, Port Réunion has initiated a process of reflection and defined concrete actions in favour of the management of natural and technological risks, industrial ecology, environmental protection in relation to global warming and the imperatives of preserving biodiversity. It has drawn up various framework documents (sustainable development plan, master plan for natural heritage, etc.). It is now continuing this process, with a particular focus on adapting to climate change.

Because of its geographical location, Port Réunion is exposed to a wide range of oceanic and meteorological hazards: southern swells, cyclones, erosion of the coastline, etc. With climate change, in particular the rise in ocean levels and the intensification of cyclones, the port’s exposure to these hazards is set to increase. The Port has therefore asked Artelia to help it draw up a strategy for adapting to these changes, taking into account the direct consequences (damage to structures) and indirect consequences (economic losses, for example).

Our teams worked with the port authorities to draw up a trajectory for anticipating the consequences of climate change in the short, medium and long term. They also laid the groundwork for its implementation as part of the port’s operational management over the next 5 years.
The success of this support is linked to the mobilisation of a multidisciplinary team combining :

  • maritime engineering, the Group’s longstanding expertise in coastal engineering and civil engineering specific to coastal and port structures,
  • consulting skills specific to the management of ocean-meteorological risks today and in the decades to come: vulnerability analysis and decision-making support to prioritise issues and build a strategy combining protection of infrastructures and resilience of port activities.