12:00 - Hydrology, meteorology & the challenge of flooding

Date: Wednesday April 20th
12:00 - Hydrology, meteorology & the challenge of flooding
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InterFLOOD Session 2
12:00 - 13:00
CHAIR: Dr David Wilkes, Global Flood Resilience Leader, ARUP

Experts from the public, private and academic sectors consider advances in flood monitoring and forecasting.

  • Libby Ba-Pe, Architect, JDA Co

    Title: The Flood Resilient Homes Program (FRHP). This program that has been developed alongside CitySmart and Brisbane City Council is the largest residential flood resilience project ever carried out in Brisbane.

    Abstract: Brisbane is the most flood impacted area in Australia with almost $300 million dollars in annualised damages and 280,000 people currently living in the floodplain with population predicted to double in the next 50 years.

    Our work as architects in the flood resilience space has encompassed community outreach with disaster-stricken homeowners and collaboration with building industry professionals, state government authorities and local city councils. Our work has ranged from designing flood resilient homes for private clients, providing flood consultancy advice to planning authorities and developing technical guidelines on flood resilient design principles. Through research, advocacy and action, our goal at JDA Co has been to produce work with a mind to affect policy and broader systemic change in order to increase our city’s resilience and adaptability to climate change.

    The culmination of our work in this space has led to the Flood Resilient Homes Program (FRHP), a program that has been developed alongside CitySmart and Brisbane City Council and is the largest residential flood resilience project ever carried out in Brisbane. At its core, the program is about increasing flood resilience in communities that are the worst and most frequently affected in the city, where infrastructure works are simply not enough to take the ever-increasing amount of water coming out of the sky.

    FRHP is designed to be highly tailored toward an individual property and to family living in it. We look at the property’s specific flooding risks and how it can be adapted to increase its ability to live through and recover from flood events. At a fraction of the cost of infrastructure works, the program is creating flood resilience by not only making houses physically resilient to flooding at no cost to the homeowner, but by also increasing community awareness and education, which has helped to relieve anxiety amongst the community.
  • Prof. Alan Jenkins, UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology

    Title: The Hydrological Status and Outlook System (HydroSOS) 

  • Robert Ireland, Director, Vaisala Pty Ltd

    Title: Observations for accurate rainfall measurements in support of flood forecasting.

    Abstract: Flooding is one of the most devastating and common natural disasters we face. The impacts of flooding is felt in many regions around the world. The toll of such events on people, national and local economies is ever increasing along with the pressure on governments to be proactive and responsive.

    Early warning systems are of vital importance in reducing the impacts of flooding events. To be effective early warning systems require accurate and timely observation of atmospheric and ground precipitation. This presentation will discuss new technologies that are available for the accurate detection and measurement of precipitation type and accumulation.  

  • Dr Faisal Ahammed, University of South Australia

    Title: Climate change adaptation using infiltration-based water sensitive technologies for Dhaka City, Bangladesh: a techno-economic analysis.

    Abstract: Bangladesh is one of the most climate vulnerable countries in the world due to geological, hydrological and socio-economic factors. The existing stormwater drainage systems of major urban areas in Bangladesh were designed based on historical rainfall data. It is likely that capacities of the existing drainage systems will not be sufficient to manage high intensive short duration rainfall which is expected due to the impact of climate change. Moreover, urbanization is reducing the infiltration areas and challenge is growing to manage the extra stormwater runoff during the extreme rainfall events. The potential adaptation can be considering urbanization as water sensitive and designing the drainage infrastructure in such a way that it will not alter natural hydrological cycle.

    This paper deals with the potential applications of Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) technologies for climate change adaptation in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Alternative and cost effective approach based on WSUD principles have been applied to design infiltration systems (leaky well and soak-away) so that these technologies can transfer Dhaka’s unsatisfactory drainage system into one which is sustainable. After the analysis, it was found that the combination of existing drainage system and leaky-well or soak-away can provide sustainable solution of urban stormwater management for the city. An economic analysis of infiltration systems for the city is also presented in this paper. The WSUD approach explained in the paper can be an effective way of climate change adaptation for small scale stormwater management – flood control, pollution control and stormwater harvesting in urban areas of
  • Users require more local context to enable them to take the right action at the right time and to understand their risk. To enable this, we are adding localised, meaningful flood impacts based on local reference points into the flood service. We are working closely with super-users from flood risk communities to crowd source this locally relevant flood information, building upon the data the Environment Agency holds. Our job is to then convert it into useful, usable services. In the future, allowing users to receive personalised alerts when these impacts are forecast will enable critical information to be available at the right time to the right people in the right way. This will enable them to take the appropriate actions to keep themselves and their family safe. 

Dr David Wilkes

Dr David Wilkes

Global Flood Resilience Leader, Director, Arup

David is Arup’s global flood resilience leader, working with the owners and operators of our infrastructure, water companies, the UK Environment Agency, governments and city leaders all over the world to prevent, alleviate and mitigate flooding.

Before joining Arup he worked for the Environment Agency, and one of his roles was managing the Thames Barrier and Flood Risks in London from all sources from 1994 to 2000.

He is currently Project Director for the Leeds Flood Alleviation Scheme and Director for several Humber tidal projects. He was Director for the guide to PPS25 and Director for the Cabinet Office sponsored report on flood resistance and resilience of critical infrastructure. He was President of the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management from 2011 to 2012. 

Libby Ba-Pe

Libby Ba-Pe

Architect, JDA Co, Australia

Since graduating from her Master of Architecture degree at the University of Queensland, Libby Ba-Pe has worked mainly in residential architecture, on a number of small and large scale private projects in Brisbane, Australia.

She joined JDA Co. a few years later to pursue her interest in design advocacy and climate change adaptive design and research. At JDA Co, she has contributed in developing the Flood Resilient Building Guidance for Queensland Homes for the Queensland State Government.

She is currently part of the team managing the roll out of the Flood Resilient Homes Program for Brisbane City Council, which is the largest flood resilience built environment project to date in Australia.

Prof. Alan Jenkins

Prof. Alan Jenkins

Chief Scientist, UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology

Alan is CEH Science Director with a research background in hydrology. He represents the UK internationally on two key forums: as Hydrological Advisor to the UK Met Office with the World Meteorological Organization and as Chair of the UK National Focal Centre for the UNESCO International Hydrology Programme.

With WMO he currently leads the Task Team to develop the ‘Global Hydrological Status and Outlook System’ and is a Member of the Executive Council Expert Panel on Water. With UNESCO IHP he represents Region 1 (Europe and N. America) as Vice-Chair on the governing Bureau. He recently initiated the COSMOS soil moisture monitoring system and the ‘hydrological outlook’ system in the UK and has been working with international partners around the world to establish similar initiatives.

Robert Ireland

Robert Ireland

Director for South East Asia and the Pacific, Vaisala

Vaisala is a leading supplier of Weather and Environmental observation infrastructure. After joining from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology in 1989, Robert has held a number of technical and commercial roles within the company.

Over his more than 30 years of experience Robert has worked closely with a number of Agencies through the Asia Pacific Region to develop solution to their observation needs. He has recently returned to Australia after living in Malaysia for 8 years gaining a deeper understanding of the weather and environmental challenges the region faces.

Dr Faisal Ahammed

Dr Faisal Ahammed

Senior Lecturer, Department of Civil Engineering, University of South Australia (UniSA)

Faisal is a Senior Lecturer of Civil Engineering at the University of South Australia (UniSA). He completed BSc Civil Engineering and Master of Engineering Management degree from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) in 2002 and 2009 respectively. He obtained Australian Commonwealth Scholarship (Endeavour Award) to perform his PhD research at UniSA in 2010 and his PhD degree was conferred in 2014.


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