Flood Mapping: Naming and Responsibilities

Flood maps - international comparison

Since the extreme flooding events of the nineties, a lot of effort has been spent on mapping the probability of flooding. For each of the participating countries maps with information on the probability of inundation are available.

Naming as well as responsibilities differs from nation to nation. For Norway, Sweden and the UK only one organisation is responsible for mapping inundation probabilities. Therefore, these countries have one type of national map, covering the whole country or the most important water courses. In Germany and the Netherlands on the other hand, the 16 Ministries of Environment of each Land (Germany) and the 26 water boards (The Netherlands) are responsible for inundation mapping. Each organisation determines which method will be used to calculate and to present flood probability and as result many different maps exist in the Netherlands and Germany.

Sweden, Norway, UK and some Lander in Germany publish the inundation maps on the Internet.

In Sweden and Norway experiences with Internet publication are positive. Because Norwegians are used to extreme events caused by nature, most inhabitants accept the phenomenon of flood risk as being part of normal life.

On the other hand, experiences with Internet publication of flood maps in the UK were less positive, because after publication real-estate prices dropped in flood-sensitive areas and some insurance companies refused to insure properties in these areas unless they were defended to a 1 in 75 year standard or above.

Naming and responsibilities of flood maps - international comparison

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Flood risk mapping






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