Flood risk – protecting coastal communities

Using 2D modelling to improve San Francisco Bay’s floodplain maps

For areas located near the coast, flooding can have a long-term impact on homes and businesses. For the counties around the San Francisco Bay, detailed information about which areas are prone to flooding is vital. Unfortunately, the available information to identify flood prone areas was nonexistent or outdated. As such, the United States Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) asked us to examine the flood risks for the entire Bay Area. Using MIKE 21, we developed two-dimensional (2D) regional scale coastal models of the San Francisco Bay shoreline. The data from our models provided more robust and reliable region-wide information for flood risk analysis. This enabled local governments to improve their flood management practices. It also gave the people living and working around the Bay the information they need to protect themselves better against floods.