Flood hazards have always been there, especially during the long rainy seasons, but it has recently hit Urban areas more than the countryside. 

A few weeks ago a viral video of Dubai flooded was making rounds online an omen that scientists attributed to cloud seeding, rain occurring due to weather modification aiming to change the amount of precipitation, increase rain or snow.  

In Kenya, floods are sweeping almost half of the country with the capital paying the most of the devastating effects. In the past three days, at least 32 people have lost their lives and more than 40,000 have had to relocate or seek alternative shelters.  

The growing risk, combined with changing climate conditions, highlights the urgent need to prioritize urban flood risk management and forecasting and forecasting.

Causes of Urban flooding

Urban flooding is caused by a combination of different weather conditions and different water levels, such as rainfall and humidity over a short period. 

These factors, together with unplanned growth and development in flood plains, poor urban development practices, and the failure of flood defenses, pose a major challenge to human life and social development, especially in the country of those who are developing. 

Urban flooding affects all types of businesses, from small towns to large cities. Since the definition of “urban habitat” varies across the world, it is difficult to define urban flooding. 

Population density and proximity to urban areas change dramatically with changes in the complexity of urban flooding. However, flood data is not disaggregated into rural and urban areas, presenting significant challenges to policymakers

Loss of life due to floods has a disproportionate impact on the poor and disadvantaged, especially women and children.

 Indirect and long-term effects, such as disease, increased burden on health infrastructure, malnutrition and malnutrition, reduced educational opportunities, and loss of life, can continue for many years. 

Such effects are difficult to detect immediately after a disaster, and even more difficult to quantify in research. Besides the devastation of communities that need to withstand any unforeseen hazards and setbacks in development in general, the indirect effects of floods put people in disadvantaged positions. 

Urbanization, a defining factor in population growth and development, increases the risk of flooding. 

Although urban growth is considered a cause of development, this well-planned and controlled process increases the risk of flooding due to inappropriate land use.  

When cities and towns expand outwards to accommodate large populations, large urban sprawl occurs in the form of illegal development in flood plains and flood-prone areas. 

Most of the increase in urban population and urban sprawl occurs in slums, low-income areas, or squatter areas. These areas are spread over urban areas, from the city center to the periphery, rural or suburban areas; and the general lack of well-built buildings, infrastructure, and services, thereby increasing the impact of storms, floods, and related dangers and ensures that the poor and marginalized are left behind worse off than before.

Urban flooding appears to be a serious and costly threat to combat due to the large number of people exposed to it in rural areas. A large proportion of Kenyans live in cities of not less than one million people, where urban infrastructure and institutions are not able to cope with adverse conditions, including heavy rains and floods.

 Therefore, urban flooding is no longer confined to urban areas; Its scope must be expanded to include large cities and rural areas urgently to support the life and livelihood of millions of people. 

Other factors that increase the impact of urban flooding include, but are not limited to development beyond the protection of existing flood defenses and historically flood-prone areas, a real estate policy based on development where priority is given to green space that absorbs water like a sponge.

Human activities

The increase of paving and other unsightly materials, increased population, density and traffic, restricted, aging or poor drainage, sanitation and solid waste facilities.

Over-exploitation of groundwater leading to flooding, lack of flood risk management services and lack of public awareness of the risks also contribute to and cause urban flooding. 

Climate change is another irreversible global factor that can contribute to the risk of floods and storms. This poorly understood event is leading to major changes in weather patterns, potentially increasing flooding.

 Heavy rains and storms of short duration lead to increased flooding in rivers, while also causing increased flooding and urban flooding.

On the other hand, climate change can also contribute to more severe and prolonged droughts, leading to reduced groundwater and low-lying soils.

How to tackle urban flooding

Although it is impossible to link extreme weather events to climate change, the increase in frequency and intensity of these events is well-known, and observable and may increase the risk of flooding.  

Effective and sustainable flood risk management requires strategic planning that mitigates impacts through better community management, implementation of regional best practices and maintenance of existing flood mitigation measures, and innovative ways to anticipate and protect against future flood risks such as building new flood mitigation, resources and commitment to strategic stability and development. 

The results will be different for each country or country at risk. An understanding of current and future flood risk is essential to making decisions on the appropriate deployment of flood management efforts. 

As a first step in managing urban flood risk, policymakers should understand flood risk and its impacts by having a better understanding of flood types and causes, their occurrence, climate, and surface conditions. machines, as well as their size, duration, and strength.

It is also important to know where and how often floods can occur, what people and property have in those places that can cause problems, how these people and their homes are vulnerable, how to organize and develop, and what they use to reduce the risk of flooding. 

This is important to understand the importance, urgency, and importance of implementing a flood risk management system. Effective social media campaigns should be enforced through digital, electronic, and print media in local governments before and during monsoon. 

Awareness should be expanded to include students, who are often unaware of poor electricity or water infrastructure. 

A thorough knowledge and understanding of the causes and effects of flood impacts and the adoption and development of measures to mitigate these impacts must be part of a comprehensive urban development plan.