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  • A flood damage allowance framework for coastal protection with deep uncertainty in sea level rise
    https://www.preventionweb.net/go/70827

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A flood damage allowance framework for coastal protection with deep uncertainty in sea level rise

Source(s):  Wiley

Deep uncertainty describes situations when there is either ignorance or disagreement over (1) models used to describe key system processes and (2) probability distributions used to characterize the uncertainty of key variables and parameters. Future projections of Antarctic ice sheet (AIS) mass loss remain characterized by deep uncertainty. This complicates decisions on long‐lived coastal protection projects when determining what margin of safety to implement. If the chosen margin of safety does not properly account for uncertainties in sea level rise, the effectiveness of flood protection could decrease over time, potentially putting lives and properties at a greater risk. To address this issue, the study develops a flood damage allowance framework for calculating the height of a flood protection strategy needed to ensure that a given level of financial risk is maintained. The damage allowance framework considers decision maker preferences such as planning horizons, protection strategies, and subjective views of AIS stability. The study uses Manhattan—with the population and built environment fixed in time—to illustrate how the framework could be used to calculate a range of damage allowances based on multiple plausible scenarios of AIS melt. Under high greenhouse gas emissions, it was found that results are sensitive to the selection of the upper limit of AIS contributions to sea level rise. Design metrics that specify financial risk targets, such as expected flood damage, allow for the calculation of avoided flood damages (i.e., benefits) that can be combined with estimates of construction cost and then integrated into existing financial decision‐making approaches (e.g., benefit‐cost analysis).



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  • A flood damage allowance framework for coastal protection with deep uncertainty in sea level rise
  • Publication date 2020
  • Author(s) Rasmussen, D. J.; Buchanan, Maya K.; Kopp, Robert E. et al.
  • Number of pages 16 p.

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