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  • Writer's pictureGeosapiens

GEOSAPIENS: THE NEXT GENERATION FLOOD MODEL

Updated: Sep 21, 2022



As in many other parts of the world, flooding is the most frequent and costly natural hazard in Canada. At the same time, this disaster is projected to increase in frequency and severity in the future due to climate change and the growing exposure to flooding because of the urban and demographic developments, especially in flood-prone areas. According to a recent report released by Public Safety Canada, this natural disaster costs annually in the recent years approximatively $1.5 billion in damage to households, property, and infrastructure with around $800 million uninsured losses.


In addition to that, existing flood maps are typically outdated or have low spatial resolution and therefore do not provide a good understanding and an accurate assessment of this risk.


Since 2017, Geosapiens has been working on the development of a new high resolution flood model based on the most recent scientific research and cutting-edge technologies. The next sections of this article will explain how Geosapiens model helps the insurance industry to offer a more viable and affordable flood insurance product and increase their resilience and preparedness to face this natural hazard.


GEOSAPIENS 1M FLOOD MODEL: THE BENEFITS OF HIGHER RESOLUTION

Figure 1: High (left) Vs low (right) spatial resolution flood maps – Yellow buildings are isolated and red buildings are flooded


Most of available flood models in Canada are at 30-meter spatial resolution. These models are useful but not accurate enough to assess the flood risk at the building scale. For example, a 30-meter pixel can roughly cover one or more flooded buildings as shown in Figure 1. High spatial resolution flood maps enable a better definition of flood-prone areas, which helps to get more accurate flood risk assessment at the building scale. With 1-meter resolution, it is possible to know if the building is completely or partially flooded, or also isolated.


Figure 2: Higher resolution data (Right) define more accurately the flood extent comparing to Lower resolution data (left)


CANADIAN FLOOD MODELING: OUR MAIN FOCUS


Floods are a real challenge for Canadian insurance industry. As a matter of fact, flood insurance products are barely available in the market and are not affordable for most of Canadian that are at mid or high-risk areas. To explain this, Canadian insurers have highlighted several risks associated with the creation of a flood insurance product such as the lack of accurate flood maps to be able to create and customize their offers at an affordable price for their clients. In addition, the risk of adverse selection represents a major limitation to the profitability of flood insurance, which leads insurers to offer prohibitively expensive premiums to face this risk.


In order to help the insurance industry to address these increasing challenges, Geosapiens is proudly working on a cutting-edge Canada-wide flood model that enables to accurately assess the flood risk anywhere across the country. With a 1-meter flood model, Geosapiens is offering the highest resolution flood maps for the insurance industry in Canada. This model joins the market needs in terms of accuracy and understandability.


TRANSFORMING FLOODS COMPEXITY INTO SIMPLICITY: OUR VALUE TO INCREASE RESILIENCE


Flood risk is not stationary because of global climate change and our dedicated team is transforming flood risk modelling complexity into an understandable assessment that is accessible to each of our clients.


We truly believe that our society’s resilience and preparedness in the face of floods can only be achieved through an accurate and understandable flood risk assessment. Speak to us about your flood-related challenges and we will be happy to work with you to identify the best solution according to your needs.


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