Arizona agency participates in climate change study

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX (AP) -- The Arizona Department of Transportation is participating in a federally funded study to see how critical infrastructure can be protected in the face of effects of climate change.

Director John Halikowski says a key aim of the research is identifying potential design changes that could be required because of extreme weather events.

The department says predicted climate trends in Arizona include long-term drought punctuated by an increasing number of unusually intense storms.

According to the department, that likely will result in more floods, dust storms and wildfires.

ADOT says 19 agencies nationwide were selected to participate in the program managed by the Federal Highway Administration.

ADOT's 12-month study is getting underway this week.