Flood Susceptibility Mapping using Fuzzy Analytical Hierarchy Process for Cedar Rapids, Iowa

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Beyza Atiye Cikmaz, Enes Yildirim, Ibrahim Demir


Floods affect over 2.2 billion people worldwide, and their frequency is increasing at an alarming rate compared to other natural disasters. Presidential disaster declarations have issued increasingly almost every year in Iowa for the past 30 years, indicating that the state is on the rise of flood risk. While significant scientific and technological advancement is becoming available for many flood mitigation activities, their on-the-ground consequences are hampered, among other things, by the lack of tools to quickly integrate the growing data into accessible and usable flood mitigation decisions. A multi-disciplinary approach is required, in which the underlying hydrologic processes that cause floods are closely linked with watershed-level socio-economic functions using effective collaboration tools to ensure community participation in the co-production of mitigation plans while paying attention to socio-environmental justice principles. Considering the existing limitations and needs, we conducted a flood risk assessment by utilizing geophysical and socio-economic datasets for a case study in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Flood risk outputs are generated based on three main risk groups: geophysical-based flood risk, socioeconomic risk, and combined flood risk. Our results indicate that high- and very-high-risk flood susceptibility zones are primarily located in central urban areas with lower elevations. According to overall results, a large area of Cedar Rapids consists of a medium risk level according to the flood risk map combined with the fuzzy AHP method. The results show that high and very high-risk areas are 16% of the examined area, medium, low and very low-risk areas correspond to 84%. Besides, nearly 40% of the population lives in high to very high flood risk zones.




Civil and Environmental Engineering, Engineering, Environmental Studies



Published: 2022-06-20 10:42

Last Updated: 2022-06-20 17:42


CC BY Attribution 4.0 International

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