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    Rights statement: This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Marine Policy. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Marine Policy, 129, 2021 DOI: 10.1016/j.marpol.2021.104544

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Geospatial modelling of tropical cyclone risk along the northeast coast of Oman: Marine hazard mitigation and management policies

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Article number104544
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>31/07/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Marine Policy
Volume129
Number of pages16
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date4/05/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

Globally, an increasing and more dispersed population, as well as climate change, have led to growing impacts of environmental hazards, particularly across areas prone to extreme weather events such as tropical cyclones. Tropical cyclones frequently cause fatalities, damage to infrastructure, and disruption to economic activities. The north and northeast regions of Oman, particularly the Oman seacoast, are prone to the storm surges, windstorms and extreme precipitation events associated with these tropical storms. However, integrated spatial risk assessments, for the purpose of mapping cyclone risk at subnational geographic scales, have not yet been developed in this area. Here we evaluate and map cyclone risk using four independent components of risk: hazard, exposure, vulnerability and mitigation capacity. An integrated risk index was calculated using a geographical information system (GIS) and an analytical hierarchical process (AHP) technique, based on a geodatabase including 17 variables (i.e., GIS data layers) and criteria, with rank and weight scores for each criterion. The resulting risk assessment reveals the spatial variation in cyclone risk across the study area and highlights how this variation is controlled by variations in physical hazard, exposure, vulnerability and emergency preparedness. The risk maps reveal that, despite their perceived adaptive capacity for disaster mitigation, the population and assets in low-lying lands situated near the coastline in the east of Muscat, as well as the Al-Batnah south governorates, are at high risk due to cyclones. Furthermore, the coastal zones of the urban Wilayats of the Muscat governorate were also found to be at high, to very high, risk. This study has several policy implications and can provide effective guidelines for natural hazard preparedness and mitigation across the northern coasts of Oman.

Bibliographic note

This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Marine Policy. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Marine Policy, 129, 2021 DOI: 10.1016/j.marpol.2021.104544