EvoFlood: The evolution of global flood hazard & risk
Collaborators: Greg Sambrook Smith, Louise Slater, Michel Wortmann
Affiliation: School of Geographical and Earth Sciences (University of Birmingham)
I am currently working on the EVOFLOOD project, a NERC funded research programme to address global flooding. Alongside colleagues from the University of Oxford, I use remote sensing datasets (including Landsat satellite imagery and the Global Surface Water product) to help develop estimates of bankfull flow and inundation frequency in rivers.
Project website: http://www.evoflood.co.uk/index.html
Sediment flux and geomorphic change as drivers of flood risk in the Philippines
Between 2019 and 2021 I worked on a jointly funded UK-Philippines research project that investigated geomorphic change in the Philippines. The project used multi-temporal remote sensing datasets including satellite imagery, aerial imagery and LIDAR to assess morphological changes in tropical rivers. I developed innovative Google Earth Engine (GEE) workflows to analyse river channel change from repeat satellite imagery, processed high-resolution topographic data for geomorphic change detection analysis and ran 2D flood models (HECRAS-2D).
A key finding from the project was spatial complexity (“messiness”) of tropical riverscapes. This included the diversity of river types within a single catchment, through to the spatially heterogenous nature of river planform mobility at the national-scale. Key outputs from the project included:
- A national-scale assessment of river catchment and stream network properties (interactive ArcGIS web-application).
- A review of Google Earth Engine applications in fluvial geomorphology (Boothroyd et al., 2020).
- Quantification of river migration at sites of critical bridge infrastructure (Boothroyd et al., 2021).
- A blog-post for PreventionWeb, the United Nations platform for disaster risk reduction and resilience (available here).
- Analysis of river diversity in the Bislak catchment (Tolentino et al., 2022).
Satellite imagery to support flood risk modelling in large European rivers
Collaborators: Michael Nones
Satellite imagery provides opportunities to map, quantify and detect changes in the riverscape that can be used to support varied flood risk and river management applications. By monitoring hydro-morpho-biodynamics and combining this information with 2D flood models, we will assess changing flood risk along the Po River (Italy) and Vistula River (Poland). Initial outputs from the project include:
- Planform morphology and vegetation coverage along the Po River (Boothroyd et al., 2021).
MANGRO-ID: Multi-hazard Assessment of Mangroves for Resilience of Coastal Communities in Indonesia
This interdisciplinary climate action project will assess how mangroves provide multi-hazard resilience for coastal communities in Aceh and Central Java (Indonesia). The project results from small-grant success in an Indonesia-UK virtual workshop on reduction of climate change impact on flood risk in urban areas, organised by University of Greenwich and Universitas Indonesia, and funded by the British Council in the run up to COP26.
PhD PROJECT: modelling flow-vegetation interactions in rivers
My PhD research focused on ecohydraulics and remote sensing; it involved modelling the effects of riparian vegetation on river flow. I designed laboratory-based flume experiments and used high-resolution numerical modelling (using computational fluid dynamics, CFD) to understand flow-vegetation interactions at the plant-scale.
- Representing complex plant morphologies in CFD models through a voxel-based approach (Boothroyd et al., 2016).
- Modelling flow structures and drag around a submerged riparian plant (Boothroyd et al., 2017).
- Importance of riparian plant orientation in river flow (Boothroyd et al., 2019).