Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


UC Researcher Seeking to Mitigate Flooding Damage to Tokyo

University of Canterbury Researcher Seeking to Mitigate Flooding Damage to Tokyo

September 7, 2014

University of Canterbury geography researcher Dr Christopher Gomez is investigating river flooding problems and potential solutions for Tokyo city, which is more than eight times the population of New Zealand.

Dr Gomez is also looking at land-use planning and bio-engineering solutions to limit the impact of a tsunami striking Tokyo. He is an international expert on surface water flooding, and his research is being funded by the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Japanese Government.

``My research shows that unfortunately such flooding events are a scary reality for numerous cities around the globe, including Tokyo, Jogjakarta, in central Java, Indonesia and even Wellington. We have vivid memories of what has happened in the United Kingdom this year and also in Christchurch – and we have to learn to better manage such events.

``Many city populations have settled in the vicinity of rivers, and even more by the coast, because they provide commercial pathways, sources of energy and sources of food. At the same time, when these rivers flood or are heavily polluted, they become a hazard.

``I’m seeking ways to produce an integrated flooding management system for Tokyo which will accommodate ecological consideration and use bio-engineering solutions to also limit the impact of a tsunami.

``I’m investigating the land around the Tamagawa River, in the west of Tokyo, an area that has seen an urban boom since World War 2. My research will be used as a laboratory for the management of waterways in New Zealand, which is facing increasing challenges to balance its economic activity with the quality of its waterways.’’

Dr Gomez’s project will connect with a coastal earthquakes water project he is working on in Christchurch in collaboration with one of the university’s civil engineers Dr Sonia Giovinazzi and hazards management expert Dr Tom Wilson, under the direction of Dr Deirdre Hart.

He says hopefully the Japanese experience will help New Zealand make more informed and better choices relating to flooding or natural disaster management.

``The flooding we have seen in Christchurch this year was strongly linked to the earthquakes that lowered several parts of Christchurch land. My research will help develop solutions for better flood-proofing our cities against either tsunami or river flooding.’’


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'

The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>

Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>

Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>

Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland