A micro-scale cost-benefit analysis of building-level flood risk adaptation measures in Los Angeles

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Abstract

Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) of flood risk adaptation strategies offers policymakers insight into economically optimal strategies for adapting to sea level rise. However, building-level adaptation measures such as floodproofing or building elevation are often evaluated at aggregated spatial scales, which may result in sub-optimal investment decisions. In this paper, we develop a flood risk model and combine it with a micro-scale CBA at the building level to obtain an optimal mix of adaptation measures per area. We apply this approach to Venice Beach in Los Angeles and Naples in Long Beach. We subsequently compare our results with the conventional, spatially aggregated area-based CBA approach. Our findings show that a mix of 35%–45% dry-floodproofing measures and 55%–65% building elevation measures is optimal. Elevation works best in areas with high inundation depths, while dry-floodproofing is preferable in areas with shallow inundation depths. The optimal mix of measures derived from our micro-scale approach results in an economic efficiency up to 85% higher than that yielded by the commonly applied spatially aggregated approach. We therefore recommend that economic evaluations of building-level adaptation measures are conducted at the smallest possible scale, or that CBAs are performed on disaggregated areas based on inundation depth.
Original languageEnglish
JournalWater Resources and Economics
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 11 Jun 2019

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cost-benefit analysis
natural disaster
beach
economics
economic efficiency
evaluation

Keywords

  • Adaptation
  • Building level
  • Climate Change
  • Cost-benefit analysis
  • Flood risk analysis
  • Sea level rise

Cite this

@article{4f6286cdf30549c1a5f8b5e03c9a0661,
title = "A micro-scale cost-benefit analysis of building-level flood risk adaptation measures in Los Angeles",
abstract = "Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) of flood risk adaptation strategies offers policymakers insight into economically optimal strategies for adapting to sea level rise. However, building-level adaptation measures such as floodproofing or building elevation are often evaluated at aggregated spatial scales, which may result in sub-optimal investment decisions. In this paper, we develop a flood risk model and combine it with a micro-scale CBA at the building level to obtain an optimal mix of adaptation measures per area. We apply this approach to Venice Beach in Los Angeles and Naples in Long Beach. We subsequently compare our results with the conventional, spatially aggregated area-based CBA approach. Our findings show that a mix of 35{\%}–45{\%} dry-floodproofing measures and 55{\%}–65{\%} building elevation measures is optimal. Elevation works best in areas with high inundation depths, while dry-floodproofing is preferable in areas with shallow inundation depths. The optimal mix of measures derived from our micro-scale approach results in an economic efficiency up to 85{\%} higher than that yielded by the commonly applied spatially aggregated approach. We therefore recommend that economic evaluations of building-level adaptation measures are conducted at the smallest possible scale, or that CBAs are performed on disaggregated areas based on inundation depth.",
keywords = "Adaptation, Building level, Climate Change, Cost-benefit analysis, Flood risk analysis, Sea level rise",
author = "{de Ruig}, L.T. and T. Haer and {de Moel}, H. and Wouter Botzen and J.C.J.H. Aerts",
year = "2019",
month = "6",
day = "11",
doi = "10.1016/j.wre.2019.100147",
language = "English",
journal = "Water Resources and Economics",
issn = "2212-4284",
publisher = "Elsevier BV",

}

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T1 - A micro-scale cost-benefit analysis of building-level flood risk adaptation measures in Los Angeles

AU - de Ruig, L.T.

AU - Haer, T.

AU - de Moel, H.

AU - Botzen, Wouter

AU - Aerts, J.C.J.H.

PY - 2019/6/11

Y1 - 2019/6/11

N2 - Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) of flood risk adaptation strategies offers policymakers insight into economically optimal strategies for adapting to sea level rise. However, building-level adaptation measures such as floodproofing or building elevation are often evaluated at aggregated spatial scales, which may result in sub-optimal investment decisions. In this paper, we develop a flood risk model and combine it with a micro-scale CBA at the building level to obtain an optimal mix of adaptation measures per area. We apply this approach to Venice Beach in Los Angeles and Naples in Long Beach. We subsequently compare our results with the conventional, spatially aggregated area-based CBA approach. Our findings show that a mix of 35%–45% dry-floodproofing measures and 55%–65% building elevation measures is optimal. Elevation works best in areas with high inundation depths, while dry-floodproofing is preferable in areas with shallow inundation depths. The optimal mix of measures derived from our micro-scale approach results in an economic efficiency up to 85% higher than that yielded by the commonly applied spatially aggregated approach. We therefore recommend that economic evaluations of building-level adaptation measures are conducted at the smallest possible scale, or that CBAs are performed on disaggregated areas based on inundation depth.

AB - Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) of flood risk adaptation strategies offers policymakers insight into economically optimal strategies for adapting to sea level rise. However, building-level adaptation measures such as floodproofing or building elevation are often evaluated at aggregated spatial scales, which may result in sub-optimal investment decisions. In this paper, we develop a flood risk model and combine it with a micro-scale CBA at the building level to obtain an optimal mix of adaptation measures per area. We apply this approach to Venice Beach in Los Angeles and Naples in Long Beach. We subsequently compare our results with the conventional, spatially aggregated area-based CBA approach. Our findings show that a mix of 35%–45% dry-floodproofing measures and 55%–65% building elevation measures is optimal. Elevation works best in areas with high inundation depths, while dry-floodproofing is preferable in areas with shallow inundation depths. The optimal mix of measures derived from our micro-scale approach results in an economic efficiency up to 85% higher than that yielded by the commonly applied spatially aggregated approach. We therefore recommend that economic evaluations of building-level adaptation measures are conducted at the smallest possible scale, or that CBAs are performed on disaggregated areas based on inundation depth.

KW - Adaptation

KW - Building level

KW - Climate Change

KW - Cost-benefit analysis

KW - Flood risk analysis

KW - Sea level rise

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DO - 10.1016/j.wre.2019.100147

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