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Deciphering River Flood Change

Deciphering River Flood Change

Objective

Many major and devastating floods have occurred around the world recently. Their number and magnitude seems to have increased but such changes are not clear. More surprisingly, the exact causes of changes remain a mystery. Although, drivers such as climate and land use change are known to play a critical role, their complex interactions in flood generation have not been disentangled.
The main objectives of this project are to understand how changes in land use and climate translate into changes in river floods, what are the factors controlling this relationship and what are the uncertainties involved. We decipher the relationship between changes in floods and their drivers by analysing the processes separately for different flood types such as flash floods, rain-on-snow floods and large scale synoptic floods. We then use data from catchments in transects across Europe to build a probabilistic flood-change model that explicitly describes the change mechanisms. The model is unconventional as it does not take a reductionist approach but conceptualises the dominant flood change processes at the catchment scale. We test the model on long high-quality flood data series. We use the model as well as the temporal and spatial data variability to quantify the sensitivity of floods to climate and land use change and estimate the uncertainties involved. The data are already available to me or will be made available through my excellent contacts in Europe.
For the first time, it will be possible to systematise the effects of land use and climate on floods which will provide a vital step towards predicting how floods will change in the future.

Principal Investigator

Guenter Bloeschl (Prof.)

Host institution

TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITAET WIEN

Address

Karlsplatz 13
1040 Wien

Austria

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 2 263 565

Principal Investigator

Guenter Bloeschl (Prof.)

Administrative Contact

Gertrud Neumeister (Ms.)

Beneficiaries (1)

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TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITAET WIEN

Austria

EU Contribution

€ 2 263 565

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 291152

Status

Closed project

  • Start date

    1 April 2012

  • End date

    31 March 2017

Funded under:

FP7-IDEAS-ERC

  • Overall budget:

    € 2 263 565

  • EU contribution

    € 2 263 565

Hosted by:

TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITAET WIEN

Austria