002 - Flood Prediction

Geographic Knowledge and Understanding

Attempts at flood prediction, including changes in weather forecasting and uncertainty in climate modelling.



Context

Flood prediction is associated with possibilities. Knowledge (data) of various climatic conditions and fluvial processes are collected from different sources and analyzed to make predictions. The organisations that have the resources to make these predictions with a high level of certainty/success have great power.



Aims

To evaluate attempts at flood prediction  including changes in weather forecasting and uncertainty in climate modelling.



Key Terminology

  • Stream Gauge data
  • Infrastructure
  • Global Flood Monitoring System
  • Flood Recession
  • Inundation
Define the words above using the 'Freshwater' text book by Codrington and the useful links below.

Useful Links

Activity One - Watch
We are going to watch a youtube clip to remind ourselves about the key causes of flooding as we have had a few sleeps since we last studied flooding! Watch the youtube clip below on the causes of flooding and write down five different causes of flooding and how each cause can be predicted.

Causes of Flooding




Activity Two - Predictions 

Answer the questions below to get you started on what the different types of flood alerts are and why it is important to categorise floods to help predict and prepare for these potential events.


  1. What is the difference between a severe flood warning, flood warnings and flood alerts?
  2. Use the first website in the 'Useful Resources' box and describe one alert that is in place today (if there is one).
  3. The BBC have collated the 10 most desirable places in England by looking at factors such as the cost of living, good schools, high employment rates, green spaces, affordable housing and commuting times, but are these areas as perfect as they seem? For each of the 10 places below use the second website in the 'Useful Resources' box and suggest which ones are likely to flood and therefore should not be on the desirable list.

10 Most Desirable Places to Live in England

The 10 Most Desirable Places to Live in England
  • CH63 - Bebington, Wirral
  • IP5 - Kesgrave, Ipswich
  • LA15 - Dalton-in-Furness, Cumbria
  • NR8 - Taverham, Norfolk
  • FY6 - Poulton-Le-Fylde, Blackpool
  • DT1 - Dorchester, West Dorset
  • WA1 - Warrington, Cheshire
  • CH62 - Eastham, Wirral
  • CH45 - Wallasey, Merseyside
  • LA13 - Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria

    4. How does the Global Flood Monitoring System work? Use the youtube clip below to help you answer the question.

Predicting Floods


    5. Using the third website link in the 'Useful Resources' box below, suggest where the next flood will be near you. Make 
        sure you explain your answer by focusing on the following points:
                    • Streamflow - 12km reserve
                    • Surface Storage - 1km reserve
                    • Inundation Map - 1km reserve
                    • Rainfall - over 7 days
                    • Flood detection



Activity Three - Uncertainty?? TOK Link

Climate Change is a controversial topic and there are countries which deny that our global climate is changing. Therefore when it comes to predicting floods some areas of the world do not forecast the future but rely purely on past data. As we know the data that is used to prove or disprove our theories can be tainted with error and bias so how valid is our data on climate change? How do we truly believe what we know?

The Challenge of Flood Prediction



  1. Watch the youtube clip above and mind map why flood prediction can be a tricky business.
  2. Using www.videonot.es watch the Tedx CERN talk and make notes on why there is uncertainty in Climate Science and how this can impact our ability to predict floods.

How to love uncertainty in climate science.

 



Exam Style Question


‘The prediction of floods is complex and includes many variables’. Discuss this statement. [10 marks]