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Title: Studies of the physical and economic effects of flooding in an agricultural area in south west Scotland
Author: McDonald, Adrian T.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1974
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A detailed examination of one protection scheme indicates that information on changes in flood frequency, extent and loss is lacking. In any "with and without" study of a protection scheme, one set of floods must be hypothetical. This study finds that direct questionnaire survey is an ineffective method of defining the attributes of the actual flood series. Physically based models which treat the floodplain as a storage area are found to identify flood extent with over 90 percent accuracy. Flood frequency studies indicate that significant hazard remains after protection. This study finds that changes in flood potential in the protected area differ significantly from those in a control area, but that this differential change is of little financial significance. An unusually high proportion of floodplain farmers are found to have multiple land holdings. Assumptions of total damage are shown to be invalid. Depth, a variable commonly linked with the prediction of damage, is found to be only one of a number of damage producing variables. The evidence suggests that the relative importance of these damage producing variables changes in different crops. Factor analytic techniques suggest that there are two basic components in the flood damage process - an erosive component and a biological component. Loss estimates are demonstrated to vary markedly according to the assumptions made. It is found that the benefits stemming from crop loss reduction, increased for potential equipment damage (and accepting the land enhancement value estimates of DAFS), do not exceed the maintenance costs in any year thus yielding a benefit to cost ratio less than one. Insurance, although found to be effectively unavailable, is believed to offer a more efficient form of protection.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available