Flood Risk Prediction, Modelling & Evaluation
Among natural risks, the impact of the flooding hazard on society cannot be understated: Europe over the 1970â€“2006 period has suffered an average annual flood loss of 3.8 billion US$. As a direct consequence, the flooding hazard influences land use and territorial planning and development at both the physical and regulatory levels. To cope with, a variety of mitigation actions can be put in place. All of these measures, structural and non structural, should rely on proper models for flood prediction, risk assessment and evaluation.
CIMA Research Foundation has long lasting experience in this research niche, tackling the problem in its multifaceted essence.
Early Warning Systems (EWS) enabling the issuing of flood warning to the population are a crucial asset in order to mitigate the impact of the hazardous event in terms of human lives and property loss. CIMA research foundation has developed research solutions with special focus on difficult-to-model environments such as the Mediterranean and the Alpine catchments (FloodPROOFS), stressing the synergic role of models and observations (S3M, Nash). As the hydro-meteorological forecasts are probabilistic in essence, specific attention is devoted to forecast uncertainty reduction, quantification and communication to decision makers. A cornerstone in the development of an EWS is to understand and model the physical processes involved in flood formation process and, more in general, that characterize the water and energy balance in a natural system. CIMA foundation has invested major research effort in advancing distributed physics-based models for an improved understanding of the physics and dynamics of the hydrologic systems (Continuum) preserving processes description and capitalizing on classical and remote observing platforms.
Building on its expertise on Hydro-meteorological chains CIMA Foundation also provides support to researcher working into soil slip prediction for enhanced EWS performance and reliability (SOILSLIP). Prediction is however incomplete if it is not complemented by prevision: the ability of describing properly what might happen in the near future or on longer time horizons. Prevision goes through scenarios representation in terms of hazard, vulnerability and elements at risk identification. CIMA Foundation has developed hazard scenarios by advancing statistical representation of rainfall and discharge (REGIONALIZZAZIONE) from regional to global scale (GAR) and integrating simplified and complete 2-D hydrodynamic models with satellite derived flood maps (OPERA). River flooding not being the only focus of CIMA Foundation researcher who developed methods for pluvial/local flooding (PONDING) that resulted into a complementary information to traditional flood hazard mapping.
Achievements in flood risk assessments and risk, hazard and exposure evaluations have developed with emerging observation techniques from space-borne sensors. However vulnerability assessment is under-developed especially compared to other risks and this hampers the development of long-term policies and non-structural finance-based mitigation frameworks (e.g., insurance products). Thus, new methods and approaches are searched in order to perform virtual surveys, with the effort of identifying the vulnerability of infrastructures, buildings or activities and to estimate physical and functional damages. In general CIMA Foundation promotes an holistic approach taking into account social, cultural, economic and educational factors as essential part of vulnerability. Specific attention is devoted to systemic vulnerability both in the direction of flood risk and in its interaction with industrial risks on the territory (NATECH); to this end, the functional categorization and characterization of the exposed elements are required..
On this basis CIMA Research Foundation supports the Department of Civil Protection at national level in the National Platform For Disasters Risk Reduction and at International level it supports UN-ISDR and the WMO Associated Program on Flood Management (APFM)
Giannoni, F., Roth, G., and Rudari R., A Semi â€“ Distributed Rainfall â€“ Runoff Model Based on a Geomorphologic Approach, Physics and Chemistry of the Earth, 25/7-8, 665-671, .
Ferraris, L., Rudari, R. and Siccardi, F., The uncertainty in the prediction of flash floods in the northern mediterranean environment, J. of Hydrometeorology, Vol. 3, No 6, pages 714-727, .
Giannoni, F., Roth, G., and Rudari, R., Can the behaviour of different basins be described by the same modelÂ´s parameter set? A geomorphologic framework, Physics and Chemistry of the Earth, 28/6-7 pp. 289-295, 2003
Giannoni, F., Roth, G., e Rudari, R., A procedure for drainage network identification from geomorphology and its application to the prediction of the hydrologic response, Advances in Water Resources, 28(6), 567-581, 2005, doi:10.1016/j.advwatres.2004.11.013.
Gabellani, S., Giannoni, F., Parodi, A., Rudari, R., Taramasso, A. C., Roth, G., Applicability of a forecasting chain at different morphological environment, Advances in Geosciences, 2, 131â€“134, 2005, SRef-ID: 1680-7359/adgeo/2005-2-131
Boni G., Parodi A., Rudari R., Extreme rainfall events: learning from rain gauge time series, J. of Hydrology, 327, 304-314, 2006, doi:10.1016/j.jhydrol.2005.11.050
Minciardi, R., Sacile, R., Taramasso, A.C., Trasforini, E., Traverso, S., Modeling the vulnerability of complex territorial systems: an application to hydrological risk. Environmental Modelling & Software 21 (2006), 949-960.
Boni, G., Ferraris, L. Giannoni, F., Roth, G., Rudari, R., Flood probability analysis for un-gauged watersheds by means of a simple distributed hydrologic model, Advances in Water Resources, 30(10), 2135-2144, 2007, doi:10.1016/j.advwatres.2006.08.009.
Ghizzoni, T., Giannoni, F., Roth, G., Rudari, R., The role of observation uncertainty in the calibration of hydrologic rainfall-runoff models, Advances in Geosciences, 12, 33-38, 2007, SRef-ID: www.adv-geosci.net/12/33/2007/
Gabellani, S., Silvestro, F., Rudari, R., and Boni, G., General calibration methodology for a combined Horton-SCS infiltration scheme in flash flood modeling, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 8, 1317-1327, 2008.
Segoni, S., Leoni,L., Benedetti, A. I., Catani, F., Righini, G., Falorni, G., Gabellani, S., Rudari, R., Silvestro, F., and Rebora, N., Towards a definition of a real-time forecasting network for rainfall induced shallow landslides, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 9, 1â€“15, 2009; www.nat-hazards-earth-syst-sci.net/9/1/2009/
Silvestro, F., Rebora, N. and Ferraris, L., Quantitative flood forecasting on small and medium size basins: a probabilistic approach for operational purposes. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 12(6), 1432-1446, 2011.
Silvestro, F., Gabellani, S., Delogu, F., Rudari, R., and Boni, G., Exploiting remote sensing land surface temperature in distributed hydrological modelling: the example of the Continuum model, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 17, 39-62, doi:10.5194/hess-17-39-2013, 2013.