"Storm Surges and Communities at Risk in South-East New Brunswick : The Case of the Community of Pointe-Du-Chene"/Marees De Tempete et Communautes a Risques Dans le Sud-Est Du Nouveau-Brunswick : Cas De la Communaute De Pointe-Du-Chene

By Delusca, Kenel; Vasseur, Liette et al. | Canadian Journal of Regional Science, Spring 2008 | Go to article overview

"Storm Surges and Communities at Risk in South-East New Brunswick : The Case of the Community of Pointe-Du-Chene"/Marees De Tempete et Communautes a Risques Dans le Sud-Est Du Nouveau-Brunswick : Cas De la Communaute De Pointe-Du-Chene


Delusca, Kenel, Vasseur, Liette, Chouinard, Omer, Canadian Journal of Regional Science


It is largely accepted that climate change resulting from human activities will most likely have severe impacts on natural and human-made systems. Among these systems, coastal zones have been considered very vulnerable. Most recent studies on the impacts and vulnerabilities of coastal zones to climate change have examined the average values of sea level rise. This approach however does not take into account the potential damage due to extreme events such as storm surges. The objective of this project was to identify localities in the community of Pointe-du-Chene, New Brunswick, that were flooded during the exceptional storm surge of January 2000 in order to develop new risk indicators of such events. The methodology included the integration of a high resolution digital elevation model coming from data generated from the Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR), with flood scenarios, and cadastral and demographic information. The flood damage indicators generated from this study confirm that a large part of the community of Pointe-du-Chene was effectively affected by this 2000 storm surge. The results confirm not only the incredible damage claims requested for this extreme event but also the need for the integration of climate change and especially the occurrence of extreme events in vulnerability studies of coastal zones.

Il est largement accepte que les changements climatiques resultant des activites anthropiques representent une reelle menace pour differents systemes humains et naturels. Parmi ceux-ci, les ecosystemes cotiers en sont particulierement sensibles. Les differentes etudes d'impacts ou de vulnerabilite des zones cotieres aux changements climatiques considerent generalement des valeurs moyennes de hausse potentielle du niveau de la mer. Cette approche dissimule les dommages considerables qui peuvent resulter de l'occurrence d'evenements extremes comine les marees de tempete. Le but de cette etude etait d'identifier les endroits de la localite de Pointe-du-Chene, Nouveau Brunswick, inondes par la maree de tempete exceptionnelle de janvier 2000 et a developper des indicateurs de risques. Une methodologie constituee essentiellement d'un couplage de donnees altimetriques a haute resolution spatiale provenant de l'utilisation de la technologie Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR), d'un scenario d'inondation, d'informations cadastrales et demographiques a ete adoptee. Les valeurs des indicateurs de l'envergure des inondations revelent qu'une bonne partie de la localite de Pointe-du-Chene a ete touchee par ladite maree de tempete. Ces resultats confirment non seulement les chiffres inoui's avances pour les reclamations de dommages causes directement par cet evenement exceptionnel, mais egalement la necessite d'integrer les conditions climatiques et particulierement les evenements meteorologiques extremes dans les etudes de vulnerabilite des ecosystemes cotiers.

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Le climat, tout au long de son evolution, a montre des patrons de variabilite natttrelle typique caracterises par une alternance de periodes froides et de periodes chaudes. Toutefois, une anomalie, caracterisee par une augmentation de la temperature moyenne globale pendant la deuxieme moitie du 19eme siecle et une variabilite atypique au cours du 20eme siecle, a ete distinctement remarquee (IPCC 2001 ; IPCC 2007). Cette tendance a l'augmentation de la temperature moyenne globale a ete attribuee a une modification de la chimie de l'atmosphere resultant principalement d'une augmentation de la concentration des principaux gaz a effet de serre (GES) dont le debut remonte a la fin du 18eme siecle (Rudiman 2003 ; Crutzen et Steffen 2003).

Au cours des deux derniers siecles, la concentration du gaz carbonique et celle du methane, deux importants GES, ont augmente d'environ 30% et plus de 100% respectivement (Crutzen et Steffen 2003). L'augmentation de la concentration de ces GES dans l'atmosphere est due principalement a la deforestation, certaines activites agricoles, l'elevage intensif, notamment celui des bovins et l'utilisation croissante de combustibles fossiles resultant d'une croissance demographique et economique sans precedent. …

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"Storm Surges and Communities at Risk in South-East New Brunswick : The Case of the Community of Pointe-Du-Chene"/Marees De Tempete et Communautes a Risques Dans le Sud-Est Du Nouveau-Brunswick : Cas De la Communaute De Pointe-Du-Chene
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