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An economic analysis of flooding in the Caribbean: The case of Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago

Studies and Perspectives Series – The Caribbean, No. 78

Published date 2019-10-11
Author Luciana Fontes de Meira - Willard Phillips
UN symbol LC/TS.2019/55


Flooding as an extreme event has become progressively evident in the Caribbean sub-region, as a result of an increased number of intense rainfall events, and storm surges from hurricanes. Such events in turn, have been linked to the impacts of global climate change, which has been shown to be the cause for several specific events including sea-level rise; global temperature rise, ocean warming and acidification, and the melting of glaciers. In the specific instance of the Caribbean subregion, flooding events often result in significant disruptions of economic and social life.

The study will use a case-study approach of selected areas in Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaica to investigate the potential economic impacts of recurrent flood events and compare with a potential cost saving benefit of specific flood control interventions. Previously developed maps and analysis of the spatial impacts of past flooding is used to define the specific geographical scope of the research in terms of exposure and vulnerability. The Damage and Losses Assessment methodology (DaLA) is used to estimate potential effects related to flood events. Planned government interventions in the selected areas will be used as a parameter of cost of flood adaptation measures.