Pre-disaster planning and preparedness: drought and flood forecasting and analysis in Zimbabwe
A situational analysis of future drought and flood impacts in Zimbabwe is outlined in this present study. The assessment under different scenarios is carried out using Aqueduct Global Flood Analyzer in which all the analyses are based on the gross domestic product (GDP), population, and the present and future (2030) urban damage. In this study, to effectively estimate future changes, three scenarios were employed, namely, IPCC Scenario A2, the Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) scenario which represents climate change, and the Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSP) scenario which represents socio-economic change. All these scenarios were employed from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 5th Assessment Report. To determine current mean monthly precipitation, 1981–2010 data were used and Meteonorm V7 software was employed for the generation of the mean monthly precipitation from 2011 to 2100. The level of flood protection employed is a 10-year one which is used to identify the population at risk, the effects of this event on the GDP and to determine the rate at which urban damage is happening. Utilizing Meteonorm V7 software, average monthly precipitation is predicted. This study determined that, in any year, the majority of Zimbabwe has a low to medium (2–3% probability) flood occurrence in which a 10-year flood has a 10% occurrence probability in any given year. If there is no flood protection employed, this 10-year flood could cause around 74.9 million USD affected GDP, 119 thousand affected population and 49.5 million USD urban damage. As much as it is impossible to eliminate drought and flood events, a diminution approach and proper planning and preparation before their occurrence reduce the economic and social losses.
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