Are we preventing flood damage eco-efficiently? An integrated method applied to post-disaster emergency actions

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Título: Are we preventing flood damage eco-efficiently? An integrated method applied to post-disaster emergency actions
Autor/es: Petit-Boix, Anna | Arahuetes Hidalgo, Ana | Josa, Alejandro | Rieradevall, Joan | Gabarrell, Xavier
Grupo/s de investigación o GITE: Agua y Territorio
Centro, Departamento o Servicio: Universidad de Alicante. Instituto Interuniversitario de Geografía
Palabras clave: Risk management | Life cycle assessment | Life cycle costing | Damage prevention | Climate change
Fecha de publicación: 15-feb-2017
Editor: Elsevier
Cita bibliográfica: Science of The Total Environment. 2017, 580: 873-881. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.12.034
Resumen: Flood damage results in economic and environmental losses in the society, but flood prevention also entails an initial investment in infrastructure. This study presents an integrated eco-efficiency approach for assessing flood prevention and avoided damage. We focused on ephemeral streams in the Maresme region (Catalonia, Spain), which is an urbanized area affected by damaging torrential events. Our goal was to determine the feasibility of post-disaster emergency actions implemented after a major event through an integrated hydrologic, environmental and economic approach. Life cycle assessment (LCA) and costing (LCC) were used to determine the eco-efficiency of these actions, and their net impact and payback were calculated by integrating avoided flood damage. Results showed that the actions effectively reduced damage generation when compared to the registered water flows and rainfall intensities. The eco-efficiency of the emergency actions resulted in 1.2 kg CO2 eq. per invested euro. When integrating the avoided damage into the initial investment, negative net impacts were obtained (e.g., − 5.2E + 05 € and − 2.9E + 04 kg CO2 eq. per event), which suggests that these interventions contributed with environmental and economic benefits to the society. The economic investment was recovered in two years, whereas the design could be improved to reduce their environmental footprint, which is recovered in 25 years. Our method and results highlight the effects of integrating the environmental and economic consequences of decisions at an urban scale and might help the administration and insurance companies in the design of prevention plans and climate change adaptation.
Patrocinador/es: We wish to thank the Catalan Water Agency and the Insurance Compensation Consortium for supporting and providing data. We would also like to thank the Spanish Ministry of Education for the grant awarded to A. Petit-Boix (FPU13/01273) to conduct this research, and the Catalan Government for the SGR funds (2014 SGR 1412), as well as the grant awarded to A. Arahuetes (FPI2013-066273/project CSO2012-36997-CO2-02) by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Finance and her mobility grant (EEBB-I-15-10197).
ISSN: 0048-9697 (Print) | 1879-1026 (Online)
DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.12.034
Idioma: eng
Tipo: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Derechos: © 2016 Elsevier B.V.
Revisión científica: si
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Aparece en las colecciones:INV - Agua y Territorio - Artículos de Revistas

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