Articles | Volume 11, issue 12
Research article
19 Dec 2011
Research article |  | 19 Dec 2011

About the influence of elevation model quality and small-scale damage functions on flood damage estimation

M. Boettle, J. P. Kropp, L. Reiber, O. Roithmeier, D. Rybski, and C. Walther

Abstract. The assessment of coastal flood risks in a particular region requires the estimation of typical damages caused by storm surges of certain characteristics and annualities. Although the damage depends on a multitude of factors, including flow velocity, duration of flood, precaution, etc., the relationship between flood events and the corresponding average damages is usually described by a stage-damage function, which considers the maximum water level as the only damage influencing factor. Starting with different (microscale) building damage functions we elaborate a macroscopic damage function for the entire case study area Kalundborg (Denmark) on the basis of multiple coarse-graining methods and assumptions of the hydrological connectivity. We find that for small events, the macroscopic damage function mostly depends on the properties of the elevation model, while for large events it strongly depends on the assumed building damage function. In general, the damage in the case study increases exponentially up to a certain level and then less steep.