The use of a flood index to characterise flooding in the north-eastern region of Bangladesh
1 UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Westvest 7, 2601 DA Delft, The Netherlands
2 Institute of Water Modelling, House # 496, Road # 32, New DOHS, Mohakhali, Dhaka, Bangladesh
3 Institute for Applied Ecology, Faculty of ESTeM, University of Canberra, Australia
a Corresponding author: B.Bhattacharya@unesco-ihe.org
Flooding in the Haor region in the north-east of Bangladesh is presented in this paper. A haor is a saucershaped depression, which is used during the dry period (Dec to mid-May) for agriculture and as a fishery during the wet period (Jun-Nov). Pre-monsoon flooding till mid-May causes agricultural loss. The area is bordering India, and is fed by some flashy Indian catchments. The area is drained mainly by the Surma-Kushiyara river system. The terrain generally is flat and the flashy characteristics die out within a short distance from the border. Limited studies on the region, particularly with the help of numerical models, have been carried out in the past. Therefore, an objective of the current research was to set up numerical models capable of reasonably emulating the physical system. Such models could, for example, associate different gauges to the spatio-temporal variation of hydrodynamic variables and help in carrying out a systemic study on the flood propagation. A 1D2D model, with one-dimensional model for the rivers (based on MIKE 11 from DHI) and a two-dimensional model for the haors (based on MIKE 21 from DHI) were developed. In order to characterize flooding in the large area a flood index is proposed, which is computed based on the hydrograph characteristics such as the rising curve gradient, flood magnitude ratio and time to peak. The index was used in characterising flooding in the Haor region. In general, two groups of rivers were identified. The study enabled identifying the hot-spots in the study area with risks from flooding.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2016
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