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Future flood losses in major coastal cities

Future flood losses in major coastal cities
Future flood losses in major coastal cities
Flood exposure is increasing in coastal cities, owing to growing populations and assets, the changing climate3, and subsidence. Here we provide a quantification of present and future flood losses in the 136 largest coastal cities. Using a new database of urban protection and different assumptions on adaptation, we account for existing and future flood defences. Average global flood losses in 2005 are estimated to be approximately US$6?billion per year, increasing to US$52?billion by 2050 with projected socio-economic change alone. With climate change and subsidence, present protection will need to be upgraded to avoid unacceptable losses of US$1?trillion or more per year. Even if adaptation investments maintain constant flood probability, subsidence and sea-level rise will increase global flood losses to US$60–63?billion per year in 2050. To maintain present flood risk, adaptation will need to reduce flood probabilities below present values. In this case, the magnitude of losses when floods do occur would increase, often by more than 50%, making it critical to also prepare for larger disasters than we experience today. The analysis identifies the cities that seem most vulnerable to these trends, that is, where the largest increase in losses can be expected
1758-678X
802-806
Hallegatte, S.
0926825e-5f97-4cf1-9fca-9c7dc52edbdd
Green, C.
a4440ea4-08aa-4bde-810e-9b615150e39e
Nicholls, R.J.
4ce1e355-cc5d-4702-8124-820932c57076
Corfee-Morlot, J.
2fd3fb07-6e2d-4e6f-9037-cbaf09ef9aff
Hallegatte, S.
0926825e-5f97-4cf1-9fca-9c7dc52edbdd
Green, C.
a4440ea4-08aa-4bde-810e-9b615150e39e
Nicholls, R.J.
4ce1e355-cc5d-4702-8124-820932c57076
Corfee-Morlot, J.
2fd3fb07-6e2d-4e6f-9037-cbaf09ef9aff

Hallegatte, S., Green, C., Nicholls, R.J. and Corfee-Morlot, J. (2013) Future flood losses in major coastal cities. Nature Climate Change, 3, 802-806. (doi:10.1038/nclimate1979).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Flood exposure is increasing in coastal cities, owing to growing populations and assets, the changing climate3, and subsidence. Here we provide a quantification of present and future flood losses in the 136 largest coastal cities. Using a new database of urban protection and different assumptions on adaptation, we account for existing and future flood defences. Average global flood losses in 2005 are estimated to be approximately US$6?billion per year, increasing to US$52?billion by 2050 with projected socio-economic change alone. With climate change and subsidence, present protection will need to be upgraded to avoid unacceptable losses of US$1?trillion or more per year. Even if adaptation investments maintain constant flood probability, subsidence and sea-level rise will increase global flood losses to US$60–63?billion per year in 2050. To maintain present flood risk, adaptation will need to reduce flood probabilities below present values. In this case, the magnitude of losses when floods do occur would increase, often by more than 50%, making it critical to also prepare for larger disasters than we experience today. The analysis identifies the cities that seem most vulnerable to these trends, that is, where the largest increase in losses can be expected

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More information

Published date: 18 August 2013
Organisations: Energy & Climate Change Group

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 356902
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/356902
ISSN: 1758-678X
PURE UUID: bc1ddff4-01a7-439b-9dac-b7bdee090c8d
ORCID for R.J. Nicholls: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-9715-1109

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Date deposited: 20 Sep 2013 07:27
Last modified: 23 Jul 2022 01:52

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Contributors

Author: S. Hallegatte
Author: C. Green
Author: R.J. Nicholls ORCID iD
Author: J. Corfee-Morlot

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