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GIS in Flood Hazard Mapping: a case study of Kosi River Basin, India

Final remarks
The research presented in this article formulates an efficient methodology to accurately delineate the flood hazard areas in the lower Kosi River basin, North Bihar, India. This study represents some exploratory steps towards developing a new methodology for inexpensive, easily-read, rapidly-accessible charts and maps of flood hazard based on morphological, topographical, demographical related data. The study has also focused on the identification of factors controlling flood hazard in the study area. It accomplishes this goal by combining Spatial AHP technique with GIS-based overlay analysis.

Such efforts should be a part of non-structural measures of flood management to reduce short term and long-term damages and to bring awareness among the scientific community on the potential need of this research. The basic merit of this methodology lies in its simplicity and low cost. This is one of the initial projects attempted; the lessons learned from this pilot effort can be applied to a larger area encompassing the entire Kosi River basin and other river basins of the country.

References cited:
  • Erkut and Moran (1991). "Locating Obnoxious Facilities in the Public Sector: An Application of the Analytic Hierarchy Process to Municipal Landfill Siting Decisions", Socio-Economic Planning Sciences 25/2, 89-102.
  • Gole, C.V. and Chitale, S.V. (1996), Inland delta building activity of Kosi river, Journal of the Hydraulic Division, Proceedings of the American Society of Civil Engineers, vol. 2, pp. 111-126.
  • Kale, V.S. (1997) Flood studies in India: A brief review. Journal of the Geological Society of India, 49, 359-370.
  • Wells, Neil A., and Dorr, John A. (1987). Shifting of the Kosi River, northern India. Geology, 15(3), 204-207.
  • Saaty, T.L., (1980). The Analytic Hierarchy Process. McGraw-Hill, New York, 20-25.
  • Siddique, M. Z., Jess, W. Everett and Baxter, E. Vieux., (1996). Landfill siting using Geographic Information System: A Demonstration. Journal of Environmental Engineering. ASCE, 122(6), 515-523.
  • Sinha, R and Jain, V. (1998). Flood hazards of north Bihar rivers, Indo-Gangetic plains. In: Kale, V. S. (Ed) Flood Studies in India, Memoir Geological Society of India, 41, 27-52.

Figure 1. Methodology followed for flood hazard mapping

Figure 2. Decision Hierarchies for Flood Hazard Index Ranking

Figure 3. Flood Hazard Map for the study area

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