Jump to Main Content
A non-stationary cost-benefit analysis approach for extreme flood estimation to explore the nexus of ‘Risk, Cost and Non-stationarity’
- Qi, Wei
- Journal of hydrology 2017 v.554 pp. 128-136
- basins, cost benefit analysis, engineering, flood damage, floods, planning, probability distribution, risk
- Cost-benefit analysis is commonly used for engineering planning and design problems in practice. However, previous cost-benefit based design flood estimation is based on stationary assumption. This study develops a non-stationary cost-benefit based design flood estimation approach. This approach integrates a non-stationary probability distribution function into cost-benefit analysis, and influence of non-stationarity on expected total cost (including flood damage and construction costs) and design flood estimation can be quantified. To facilitate design flood selections, a ‘Risk-Cost’ analysis approach is developed, which reveals the nexus of extreme flood risk, expected total cost and design life periods. Two basins, with 54-year and 104-year flood data respectively, are utilized to illustrate the application. It is found that the developed approach can effectively reveal changes of expected total cost and extreme floods in different design life periods. In addition, trade-offs are found between extreme flood risk and expected total cost, which reflect increases in cost to mitigate risk. Comparing with stationary approaches which generate only one expected total cost curve and therefore only one design flood estimation, the proposed new approach generate design flood estimation intervals and the ‘Risk-Cost’ approach selects a design flood value from the intervals based on the trade-offs between extreme flood risk and expected total cost. This study provides a new approach towards a better understanding of the influence of non-stationarity on expected total cost and design floods, and could be beneficial to cost-benefit based non-stationary design flood estimation across the world.