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TitleFlood-risk mapping for storm-surge events and sea-level rise using lidar for southeast New Brunswick
AuthorWebster, T L; Forbes, D LORCID logo; MacKinnon, E; Roberts, D
Source26th Canadian Symposium on Remote Sensing: Managing resources and monitoring the environment/26e Symposium canadien de télédétection : La gestion des ressources et le suivi de l'environnement; by Hopkinson, C (ed.); White, H PORCID logo (ed.); Canadian Journal of Remote Sensing vol. 32, no. 2, 2006 p. 194-211,
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 2005738
PublisherInforma UK Limited
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
SubjectsNature and Environment
ProgramReducing Canada's Vulnerability to Climate Change
ProgramClimate Change Action Fund (CCAF)
ProgramEnvironment Canada, Funding Program
ProgramAtlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF)
ProgramCanadian Space Agency, Government Related Initiative Program (GRIP)
ProgramGovernment of Canada, Interdepartmental Recovery Fund
Released2014 06 02
AbstractCoastal flooding from storm-surge events and sea-level rise is a major issue in Atlantic Canada. Airborne light detection and ranging (lidar) has the spatial density and vertical precision required to map coastal areas at risk of flooding from water levels typically 1-2 m higher than predicted tides during storm surges. In this study, a large section of the New Brunswick coast along Northumberland Strait was surveyed in 2003 and 2004 using two lidar systems. Water levels from a major storm-surge event in January 2000 were surveyed using a global positioning system (GPS) and used as a benchmark for flood-risk maps. Maps of flood depth were also generated for all water levels and used for socioeconomic and ecosystem impact assessment. Flood-risk maps were constructed using standard geographical information system (GIS) processing routines to determine the spatial extent of inundation for a given water level. The high resolution of the lidar digital elevation model (DEM) captured embankments such as raised roadbeds that could prevent flooding inland. Where connectivity was present due to culverts or bridges, the DEM was notched across the roadbed to simulate the connection between the ocean and upstream low-lying areas in the GIS. An automated routine was then used to generate maps of flood extent for water levels at 10 cm increments from 0 to 4 m above mean sea level. Validation of the flood-risk and flood-depth maps for the January 2000 storm-surge water level by field visits indicates that the simulations are generally accurate to within 10-20 cm. The lidar data were also used to evaluate the potential for overtopping and dune erosion on a large coastal spit, La Dune de Bouctouche. This showed a high vulnerability to storm damage for critical habitats on the spit. The lidar-derived maps produced in this study are now available to coastal communities and regional planners for use in the planning process and to assist in development of long-term adaptation strategies.

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