Flood resilience and recovery

Severe flooding has hit communities around the globe this year, from China to Germany to the USA, disrupting lives and livelihoods and causing lasting damage to infrastructure and housing. The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Report warns that global heating is intensifying the water cycle, bringing about more periods of intense rainfall and flooding in some areas, including cities, and longer droughts in other areas. Meanwhile, rapid urbanisation and ‘concretisation’ has reduced natural drainage capacity and exacerbated the issue for towns and cities.

Local authorities have a significant role to play in flood preparation and response, from mitigation, education and preparation activities to emergency support, communications and recovery. With major flooding becoming increasingly prominent, local authorities are under growing pressure to act to make their communities more flood resilient, despite limited resources and mixed messaging about the best course of action.

This bundle highlights innovative local government flood policy from around the globe, tying into this week’s Global Local Recap. More information about the free, weekly Global Local Recap is available here.

Photo by tornadochaser on iStock

How can nature-based infrastructure provide solutions to flooding? A global look at adoption

In the coming decades, the impact of coastal, fluvial and pluvial flooding will significantly increase across many parts of the world, making effective flood risk management crucial. Nature-based flood measures are receiving increasing attention for their ability to not only provide the same protection as grey infrastructure but co-benefits including ecosystem conservation. Read our new briefing here.

Floodable parks as a tool for local flood resilience

As the likelihood of both coastal and rainwater flooding increases with climate change and rapid urbanisation, floodable parks and other innovative sustainable urban drainage solutions provide one answer for local resilience. Read our blog here.

Urban flooding – a view from Scotland

Urban flooding is a pressing challenge for local authorities across the world. Kirsty MacRae from the Scottish Flood Forum writes about the situation in Scottish cities and explores what can be done to address this issue going forward. Read this blog.

Strategies to reduce flood impact: the role for local government

This briefing from Australia discusses current obstacles for local governments in realising the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030′s priorities and highlights some ways to overcome these obstacles to build resilient communities. Read this briefing here.

Valencia: flood adaptation and active populations

Like many European cities, a river was once at the heart of Valencia. But a history of flooding culminating in a devastating inundation in 1957 called for serious action. LGIU’s Ingrid Koehler discovered how Valencia, Spain, turned flooding disaster into cultural, sporting and transport opportunity. Read our blog here.

Finding and funding solutions to flooding

Even when the problem of flooding reaches the top of the agenda, where will the solutions come from? LGIU’s Chief Operating Officer, Dr Andy Johnston reports from the 2020 National Flood Forum Conference. Read our blog here.

Floods of the future: what can we learn from recent responses to flooding?

Parts of Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium experienced catastrophic flooding in mid-2021 following record levels of rainfall. Questions arose around how such a devastating outcome came to pass and how similar circumstances can be avoided in future. Read our content here.

Predicting the flood

LGIU’s Barry O’Brien updates us on FloodCitiSense, a project to develop effective, local flood prediction tools that involves citizens as co-creators in developing solutions. Read our blog here.

Urban wetlands for liveability, biodiversity and fighting climate change

This briefing looks at how the provision of green infrastructure, including urban waterways and wetlands, can both stimulate the economy through ‘building back greener’ at the same time as helping to mitigate climate change and biodiversity loss. Read our content here.

Councillors can support and help to build climate resilient communities

Evidence is clear that the frequency and severity of extreme weather events have increased as a direct consequence of human-induced climate change. It is imperative that local authorities identify risks from the current and future impacts of climate change and put in place plans to increase resilience. Read our content here.

Resources from the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC regarding flood recovery

Recent major floods across areas of NSW and Queensland have again shown the exposure of Australians to natural hazards and disasters, along with the resilience of local communities. This briefing contains resources from the BNHCRC regarding flood responses. Read our content here.