Researchers detail guidelines for flood risk mitigation in West Africa

Researchers on the “Current and Future Risks of Urban and Rural Flooding in West Africa” (FURIFLOOD) project are developing a guidebook on ecosystem-based flood risk-reduction measures in West Africa.

The book which is at the draft stage details flood risk and its components and gives a comprehensive analysis of how ecosystem-based disaster risk management could reduce flood.

At a research dissemination workshop in Kumasi, a Principal Investigator of the project, Professor Dr. Andreas Fink of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, indicated that the book which highlights early warnings and emergency management strategies will come in handy for stakeholders such as the meteorological agencies and National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO).

The FURIFLOOD Project aims to generate scientific knowledge regarding climate drivers of current and future extreme events related to flooding in West Africa and integrate this with case studies to better understand risks and impacts.

The West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) is executing the four-year project, which started in August 2021 and is expected to end in July 2024.

Prof. Dr. Fink further revealed the project has developed two-dimensional hydrodynamic modeling with a river analysis system to stimulate flood scenarios.

“Large efforts had been undertaken to gain information on parameters such as flood depths recorded by inhabitants to calibrate and validate models.

“These analyses would help identify which magnitudes of hazard were prone to become a severe risk for the population around streams in Kumasi,” he explained.

Through the project, the researchers have successfully replaced obsolete rain gauge instrumentation at 10 stations in the Ashanti Region with KNUST technicians also designing a new logger to relieve challenges in faulty original data loggers.

The College of Science of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is hosting the project in Ghana.

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