ESR 1 - Development of Future Weather techniques for flood risk assessment
Sonu Khanal, home country Nepal
Host Institute: FutureWater Research and consultancy for a sustainable future of our water resources
6702 AA Wageningen
Tel: +31 317 460 050
Climate change effects on flood risk are typically visualized by analyzing ensembles of GCM simulations driven by future greenhouse gas forcings. However, the visualization power of these condensed scenarios is limited and a strong translation from the climate model world to the flood risk world is needed. This project will apply the concept of Future Weather: high-resolution simulations of weather events put in a future climate context and a high degree of tailoring the analyzed events to increase the realism of visualized climate change impacts for flood risk analysis. Much more realistic flood scenarios can thus be constructed. This approach is particularly suited to explore unprecedented events and situations that are subject to compound occurrence of events, such as the superposition of storm surge and heavy rain or snow melt and heavy rain. The Future Weather concept does not allow a robust return period estimation for these events. Complemented analysis of course-resolution projections needs to give probabilistic information. Depending on the area of interest, a different set of Future Weather techniques may be needed. The developed Future Weather techniques will therefore be validated for three different case-study river basins. This project will explore how these Future Weather scenarios can complement the traditional climate change scenario approach, and possibly contribution of this methodology to adaptation planning programs such as the Dutch Delta Program. Future Weather scenarios developed in this project will be aligned with activities carried out by ESR7.
ESR 2 - Flood change attribution: considering sources and pathways for understanding the past
Miriam Bertola, home country Italy
Host Institute: Technische Universität Wien
Tel: +43 1 58801-22333
Assessment of decadal changes in flood discharges and attribution of the main drivers of change. This is an inverse problem, where methods of systems identification will be used to identify, in an optimal way, the sources and drivers that have led to changes in the flood discharges and consequently flood risk. The methods will be developed by making use of flood data, climate data and catchment data from European catchments. The drivers of change considered are related to climate (changed precipitation intensities, changed circulation patterns, changed sequence of storms), catchment processes (changed snow melt conditions, changed antecedent soil moisture, changed land use and therefore infiltration and storage characteristics), and river channel processes (changed conveyance, changed flood plain storage, construction of hydraulic structures). The system identification method will be developed in cooperation with ESR14.
ESR 3 - Identification of flood hazard patterns and flood-prone areas for large regions
Ricardo Tavares da Costa, home country Portugal
Host Institute: GECOsistema srl
Viale Giosuè Carducci, 15
47521 Cesena (FC)
Tel: +39 3921135329
The EU Flood Directive requires the member states to perform comprehensive flood hazard and risk assessments on all flood-prone areas, thus implying detailed analyses for ungauged or poorly gauged basins and large floodplains where resorting to detailed and computationally demanding hydrodynamic models is not feasible. To support regional authorities in these costly tasks, this project will develop: (1) data-driven methods for estimating extreme floods over large areas, by simplified conceptualizations of the interplay between meteorological drivers and catchment processes (e.g. multivariate regional envelope of record floods); (2) simplified GIS-based methods for large-scale flood hazard mapping based on floodplain morphology and land-use, by extrapolating results from detailed hydraulic studies from the local to the large scale. In particular, the analyses will investigate the descriptiveness of different morphometric indices for characterizing and quantifying exposure to flood hazard, providing parsimonious procedures that are applicable at large spatial scales. The research activities will be performed in collaboration with AdB-Po testing the suitability of the proposed procedures for assessing flood hazard patterns at the river basin scale.
ESR 4 - Generation of boundary conditions for large-scale flood risk assessment
ESR 5 - Identification of large-scale flood-risk changes and adaptation strategies
Iuliia Shustikova, home country Ukraine
Host Institute: Alma Mater Studiorum - Università di Bologna
Scuola di Ingegneria e Architettura | Dipartimento DICAM - Costruzioni idrauliche
Viale del Risorgimento, 2 - 40136, Bologna
Tel: +39 51 20 9 3357
This project proposes to assess flood-risk changes and tests adaptation strategies over large flood-prone areas by developing modelling tools which incorporate information on Hydrology and Society interactions. These tools will guide the comparison of different adaptation strategies to flood-risk change by explicitly accounting for anthropogenic changes in exposure and vulnerability to floods (e.g., land-use and population dynamics mapped through conventional census data and innovative remotely-sensed data such as distributed nightlight data, anthropogenic land-subsidence) and incorporating the effects of mitigation measures and possible failures of flood defences. Assessing flood risk over large areas under consideration of the interactions among floods, historical, current and future land-uses, population densities, topographic conditions and mitigation measures requires fast modelling schemes. Hydraulic models of different complexity (2D raster-based or coupled 1D-2D) will be merged with GIS-based tools in order to support institutions and public bodies in the definition of optimal large-scale policies for a resilient adaptation to flood-risk changes. This project has links to and will use input from several other ESR projects (ESR3: extreme flood events; ESR6, ESR7: interactions in river systems; ESR13, ESR14: damage modelling, ESR8, ESR11: mitigation strategies).
ESR 6 - Development of improved flood risk analysis methods for river deltas including the effects of defence failures on flood risk
Alex Curran, home country Ireland
Host Institutes: Deltares - Flood Risk Management Department, TU Delft - Civil Engineering Faculty, Hydraulic Structures and Flood Risk Section
Tel: +31 62 7289688
Current flood risk management frameworks are usually deterministic, simplified or in case they are more complex their applicability is limited to small areas. This project, therefore, aims to develop and improve combined probabilistic-deterministic flood risk analysis approaches for large river deltas which take into account flood defence failures, hydrodynamic interdependencies, and flood impacts. The approach will enable a large-scale risk analysis, or a local flood risk analysis taking into account the effects of the larger system. This approach will be applied on the Lower Rhine and Po Rivers. The application will provide insight in the spatial distribution of flood risks and interdependencies between upstream and downstream risks will be investigated, e.g. effect of strengthening of upstream parts on downstream risks. The model will be developed in cooperation with ESR7 (focusing on large-scale inland river networks) and ESR8, (focusing on flood risk management strategies).
Fluvial processes such as attenuation or superposition of flood waves in river networks, natural and human-controlled floodplain storage or failure of flood defences may considerably shape the spatio-temporal pattern of flood hazard and risk. These interactions between different fluvial processes are particularly important for risk assessment for policy making and reinsurance industry, yet are not considered in models at large scales. The project will develop the modelling tools and analysis techniques to quantify large-scale effects of fluvial processes (e.g. floodplain storage effects) and particularly of dike failures on the evolution of flood patterns in a large basin. The model will be applied to the Rhine catchment (links to ESR6, ESR8). In particular, the solidarity principle will be taken into account for assessment of spatio-temporal risk patterns (upstream-downstream risk shifts) and potential risk compensation measures.
ESR 8 - Development of transboundary, long-term flood risk management strategies taking into account uncertain spatial risk patterns and spatial interdependencies
Alessio Ciullo, home country Italy
Host Institute: Deltares
Tel: +31 6 42008344
Uncertainty characterizes a flood risk system by definition: from forecasting meteorological and hydrological conditions to predicting socio-economic development. Uncertain is the way river-dike interactions take place (e.g. upstream-downstream hydrodynamic interactions) as well as the impact of the expected climate change and socio-economic development. Nevertheless, policy makers are required to implement flood risk management plans over large areas and there is very little knowledge about how the uncertainties in the flood risk system affect decisions.
The present project will develop an exploratory model representative of large-scale flood risk systems with the aim of developing robust and adaptive flood risk management plans. The model will provide a spatially distributed characterisation of flood risk by paying a particular attention on how measures upstream affect flood risk downstream (upstream - downstream interactions). Several sets of strategies will be explored, spanning from structural to non-structural ones and the performance of each management strategy will be assessed with respect to a multiple, heterogeneous set of performance indicators, e.g. costs, economic damage, casualties and risk-transfer. The analysis will focus on the Lower Rhine River and the Po River (Italy) and policy recommendations will be derived for both case studies by placing emphasis on the implications of uncertainty in decision making. Close cooperation is foreseen with ESR4, ESR6, ERS7 and ESR9.
ESR 9 - Development of a new European-wide flood hazard assessment approach
Jeison Sosa, home country Ecuador
Host Institute: University of Bristol, School of Geographical Sciences
Tel: +44 7957468007
Flood hazard projections at national and trans-national scales are needed for climate change studies, reinsurance pricing, emergency operations during major floods and prioritizing strategic investment. I will develop a Europe-wide probabilistic flood hazard chain by combining Europe-wide models of catchment hydrology and floodplain inundation at 100 m resolution with output from the weather generator being developed by ESR4. Yet stochastic modelling tools to develop such projections at this scale do not currently exist. The characteristics of extreme European storms that generate large-scale floods will be investigated. This allows analysing the impact of uncertainty in extreme storm data on the simulated flood risk.
ESR 13 - Analyses and modelling of changes in vulnerability with focus on private sector
Nivedita Sairam, home country India
Host Institute: German Research Centre for Geosciences GFZ, Section 5.4 Hydrology
Tel: +: +49 331 288-1596
The research is aimed at answering three particular questions in concepts relating to vulnerability of private households and estimated flood losses. The vulnerability of households are determined based on their adaptation to flood events. The first phase of the research aims at determining the efficiency of private precaution in reducing flood losses and also how this relationship is accounted for in existing flood loss estimation models (FLEMO). Following these analyses, the second phase aims are developing a flood loss estimation model based on causal Bayesian Networks to account for changes in vulnerability in flood loss estimation. Integrating these results in the German wide Regional Flood Model (RFM) would be the final step in my research.
Additionally, I would be analyzing the spatial transferability of my Bayesian Network based model by learning and updating the model with datasets collected from the UK floods and also comparing the model built based on empirical data collection with synthetic data for flood loss estimation as a part of my secondament in MiddleSex University.
Studies about flood risk change are currently focused on changes in flood hazard and exposure. Changes in vulnerability, e.g. changes in precaution, are so far not taken into account. The project aims at analysing past changes in vulnerability and their drivers, as well as modelling these changes for future flood risk projections. The focus is on private precaution as a main determinant of vulnerability of private households. Quantitative analyses of past changes in private precaution and their drivers will be undertaken based on a unique object-specific flood damage database (HOWAS21). To this end, data-mining approaches, in particular Random Forests and Bayesian Networks will be used yielding uncertainty estimates as well. Based on these analyses, an agent-based model will be developed to simulate changes in vulnerability for projections in the future (links with ESR12). The developed model and results will be integrated into the Regional Flood Model for Germany (RFM) undertaking flood risk analyses under past (together with ESR14) and future (together with ESR1, ESR14) changing conditions.