Evaluation of flood risk reduction strategies through combinations of interventions

Prepared by:

Erik C. van Berchum, William Mobley, Sebastiaan N. Jonkman, Jos S. Timmermans, Jan H. Kwakkel, Samuel D. Brody

Prepared for:

Journal of Flood Risk Management

Publication Date:

November 1, 2018

Large, complex coastal regions often require a combination of interventions to lower the risk of flooding to an acceptable level. In practice, a limited number of strategies are considered and interdependencies between interventions are often simplified. This paper presents the Multiple Lines of Defence Optimization System (MODOS)-model. This quick, probabilistic model simulates and evaluates the impact of many flood risk reduction strategies while accounting for interdependencies amongst measures. The simulation includes hydraulic calculations, damage calculations, and the effects of measures for various return periods. The application and potential of this model is shown with a conceptual and simplified case study, based on the Houston-Galveston Bay area. The analyses demonstrate how the MODOS-model identifies trade-offs within the system and shows how flood risk, cost, and impact respond to flood management decisions. This improved understanding of the impact of design and planning choices can benefit the discussions in finding the optimal flood risk reduction strategy for coastal regions.