Scholar’s Hub @ Home: Harnessing the power of AI for flood forecasting
Usman T. Khan, Associate Professor & Graduate Program Director, Lassonde School of Engineering
Floods are the most frequent weather-related natural disasters, affecting the largest number of people globally, with economic damages in excess of $900 billion (between 1994 and 2013). Climate change and urbanisation have led to an increase in floods globally in recent decades and this trend is projected to continue in the coming years, including in Canada. Despite this, Canada is the only G7 country without a nationwide flood forecasting systems which are key to saving lives and reducing the damages associated with floods. Hydroinformatics, the study of complex hydrological systems by combining water science, data science, and computer science, attempts to improve traditional flood forecasting through the use of advanced techniques such as Artificial Intelligence (AI). This talk will outline recent research in this area and plans to build a Canada-wide, open-source, real-time, operational flood forecasting system which harnesses the power of AI to improves our ability to predict and prepare for floods.