Journal of Geography  & Natural Disasters

Journal of Geography  & Natural Disasters
Open Access

ISSN: 2167-0587


A GIS Methodology to Assess Exposure of Coastal Infrastructure to Storm Surge & Sea-Level Rise: A Case Study of Sarasota County, Florida

Christopher A. Tate and Tim G. Frazier

Storm surge is the leading cause of loss of life and property from hurricanes. Recent research using geographical information system (GIS) technology has demonstrated sea level rise (SLR) will increase storm surge inundation zones. While effective and accepted GIS models exist for framing surge inundation there is a lack of depth information and consideration of SLR that may be critical for examining the exposure of coastal assets to current and future storm surge hazards. There is a need for a methodology that relates depth to inundation and asset exposure, and is supported by recent hazard vulnerability and resilience literature. Furthermore, new data has been collected that facilitates more detailed SLR modelling than available in previous research. Researchers provide a framework for GIS depth modelling of contemporary and SLR enhanced storm surge that is superior to two-dimensional inundation modelling for examining exposure of societal assets to storm surge and SLR in Sarasota County, Florida. The effectiveness of this framework is demonstrated in a GIS by comparing inundation modelling, depth modelling, and SLR modelling as applied to the exposure of flood-depth sensitive infrastructure in Sarasota County, Florida.