National Flood Risk Information Portal
The main aim of National Flood Risk Information Project (NFRIP) is to make flood risk information accessible from a central location. Geoscience Australia will facilitate this through the development of an online Flood Risk Information Portal. Over the four years NFRIP will launch a new phase of the portal prior to the commencement of each annual disaster season. Each phase will increase the amount of flood risk information that is publicly accessible and increase stakeholder capability in the production and use of flood risk information.
What information will be available from the Portal?
During the initial phase of the Portal, Geoscience Australia’s Australian Flood Studies Database (AFSD) will be updated with digital flood study reports, some of which include flood maps, and a more user-friendly interface.
Summary information on each flood study will also be provided, including information on how the study was done, what data was used, what flood maps were produced and for what scenarios, and the custodian and author (e.g. consultant) details. Where the study included an assessment of damage, details such as estimates of annual average damage, or the number of properties affected during a flood of a particular likelihood will also be included.
Later phases will see the development of the Australian Flood Information System (AFIS). The AFIS will host mapped flood data and provide access the information already available in the AFSD. Mapped flood data likely to be accessible through the AFIS will include flood extents and to a lesser degree information on water depths. The aim is for AFIS to display data for a range of scenarios from small to extreme events, though this will be dependant on stakeholder contributions.
The AFIS will also include historical flood data obtained from a thirty year record of Landsat imagery. This data will show whether a particular location was ‘wet’ at some point during the thirty year period; however, it will not necessarily represent the peak of a flood or show water depth. This data will be useful particularly in rural areas where there is little or no flood information.
How will flood information be made available?
NFRIP will facilitate the central access of existing flood risk information through Geoscience Australia’s website. This information is currently available from disparate sources, which can make it difficult to obtain as it is often not publicly available. NFRIP will encourage best practice in the development of new flood risk information. It will do this by producing standards and guidelines that can be used by stakeholders.
NFRIP will provide stakeholders with the ability to upload mapped data to the AFIS. Data management tools and standards, developed through the NFRIP, will enable data custodians to map their data to standards and upload it to the AFIS. NFRIP will also make mapped data accessible via web services.
While the Portal will initially publish already available flood risk information, the foundation architecture will be designed to allow the Portal content to grow over time to meet the needs of users.
What is a portal?
A portal is a way to present diverse content and applications to users through a consistent, unified web-based interface. It provides a convenient starting point for users to find in-depth information about a particular issue. The pages of a portal’s site are organised by tabs or other types of navigation. Each page leads to further sub-pages or one or more "sub-portals"—individual windows that display anything from static content to interactive maps to complex web services. A page can contain multiple sub-portals, giving users access to different information and tools in a single place.
A government portal can contain cross-agency and cross-jurisdiction information. The aim is to aggregate content from a number of other systems or servers, improve access to information by decision makers and the public, strengthen the quality and consistency of content, and provide cost and efficiency savings to governments, the private sector and the community.
A portal allows information to be brought together and disseminated in a timely, equitable and efficient manner. At the same time the quality, integrity, integration and usefulness of that information can be maximised. And different categories of user can access different types of information. Portal administrators, and in some cases users, can customise portals, and content can be presented based on user preferences or access rules.
Topic contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Last updated: January 21, 2013