(UNESCO / Japan Young Researchers' fellowships programme)

Flood Risk Assessment of Thabaung Area, Ayeyarwady Region, Myanmar

Summary of research carried out: 
Flood Risk Assessment of Thabaung Area, Ayeyarwady Region, Myanmar

Flood risk assessment would encourage greater awareness about the risk of flooding. In Myanmar, flood is one of the most common natural disasters which occur in every year. The objective of research work is tried to logically integrate geomorphic and hydrological aspects with flood hazard intensity and population, landuse/landcover and questionnaire attributes with the magnitude of vulnerability. Both are necessary for formulating risk intensity classes which will assist in identifying priority areas for effective planning and safety measures.

Thabaung Township was notably suffered flood hazards in 2015 and 2016. Flood risk mapping is an important component for appropriate land use planning in food prone areas. According to flood risk map, most of the village tracts of Thabaung Township experienced high to very high flood risk index, especially on eastern parts of Ngawun River. These village tracts area largely cultivated area. Most of the cultivated areas are flood plain area and which are fertile and produces great amount of cash crops. The risk map generated is not just on the basis of inundation data but it is the result of integration of several parameters. All the parameters derived from different sources were converted to grid format and integrated in a GIS environment using AHP for preparation of flood hazard, vulnerability and flood risk maps. This study combines the present map information, expert questionnaires, and overlaying analyses in GIS, aiming to clarify the potential risk analysis.

The risk map depicts the environment form, the concern and the vulnerability of the population in the area that is prone to the hazard. Therefore, the risk map takes into account the population, the areas of human activities like settlements and the cultivated areas. The result clearly indicates the areas that are flat, low lying active flood plain and near to the active channels are mostly risks prone due to high probability of occurrences of flood hazard and concentration of population, agricultural expansion and inadequate resilience capacity to minimize the hazardous situations which incorporates almost entire eastern and middle parts of the study area. This study could be helpful for the local community to comprehend the factors causing flood plains inundation.