Assessing the Benefits of Flood Warning: Phase 2
(March 2007-February 2008)


Background to research
This project has been commissioned by SNIFFER on behalf of the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) and the Environment Agency (EA). It takes forward the recommendations from the SNIFFER Assessing the Benefits of Flood Warning: Scoping Study Phase 1 report (UKCC10, completed by HR Wallingford in September 2006).  The Phase 1 report reviewed current practice in the assessment of benefits of flood warning in the UK and internationally.  It gave recommendations on the components that could be used in future methodologies and proposed the use of Multicriteria Analysis (MCA) as the most appropriate assessment method.

Objectives of research
This technical report describes the development of a new Flood Warning system benefit assessment methodology that takes into account both tangible and intangible benefits.  The assessment method is presented in the form of a MCA ‘tool’ supported by Geographical Information System (GIS) procedures.

Key findings and recommendations
A new MCA tool has been developed to assess the intangible and tangible benefits of flood warning.  This has been developed and validated using nine pilot studies in Scotland, England and Wales.  The spreadsheet based tool is supported by GIS pre-processing and provides a clear audit trail which can support decision making and sensitivity analysis.  The tool is capable of being used to assess a range of return periods (5 year to 1000 year).  As a consequence the tool will be suitable for use by SEPA and potentially by the EA, with the potential to be transferable to Northern Ireland in the future.

Future developments/considerations
Keywords: Flood warning, benefit, tangible, intangible, social, MCA

Copies of this report are available from the Foundation, in electronic format on CDRom at £20.00 + VAT or hard copy at £25.00, less 20% to FWR members.

N.B. The report is available for download from the SNIFFER Website