New Model Aims to Deliver Clarity for Flood Hotspot

Reinsurance broker Guy Carpenter has today launched a new flood model for the Philippines.

The firm said the probabilistic model provides countrywide coverage and enables insurers to assess flood exposure, one of the most frequently occurring natural hazards in the region. The country has been historically hard hit by flooding and the new model is designed to enhance the ability for underwriters to provide capacity.

The model is based on a 10,000-year stochastic catalogue simulating both fluvial (riverine) and pluvial (rainfall) flooding, including the impact of typhoon-induced precipitation. The fluvial component of the hazard was developed using leading-edge hydrological and hydraulic modeling to simulate river discharges across the river network in the country. Pluvial flooding is simulated using an in-house methodology accounting for local climate conditions, soil type, land use, and topography.

Bengt Johnsen, Head of South East Asia and Korea Region, Guy Carpenter, added: “The Philippines have a long history of devastating flood events, and the combined impacts of climate change and rapid urbanisation are aggravating the problem. Our model provides clients with best-in-class capabilities to quantify flood risk and make informed business decisions, both for internal risk management purposes and for the placement of reinsurance.”

The model was developed by incorporating data from several public and private institutions, including JBA, Intermap and the European Space Agency. It features up-to-date flood defense information resulting from a comprehensive survey of current mitigation projects, including those sponsored by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The built environment was created by incorporating data from various sources, including satellite products and Guy Carpenter’s proprietary Industrial Park Database.

The vulnerability component of the model is based on a compendium of empirical vulnerability functions from scientific literature developed in collaboration with the German Research Centre for Geosciences and presented in a peer-reviewed academic paper on the latest advances in flood vulnerability modeling. The vulnerability component was further calibrated using a database of historical losses in the Philippines.

The broker said the enhanced model output offers clients greater flexibility.

“It can produce event-loss tables, occurrence exceedance probability curves, and average annual losses at virtually any level of aggregation,” it added. The model is powered by the Oasis Loss Modelling Framework (Oasis LMF), an open-source catastrophe modeling platform designed and built by the re/insurance industry.