Green infrastructure for coastal flood protection: The longitudinal impacts of green infrastructure patterns on flood damage
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Green infrastructure for coastal flood protection: The longitudinal impacts of green infrastructure patterns on flood damage

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  • Journal Title:
    Applied Geography
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    The importance of implementing green infrastructure (GI) for flood protection is supported by multiple substantial cross-sectional analyses. Yet, limited longitudinal research has been conducted which addresses how to maintain and improve the configuration of GI in order to minimize the cost of losses resulting from flooding. Structural damage from devastating storm events has repeatedly imposed substantial financial burdens on local governments in coastal regions. This study longitudinally examines the impacts of changes in GI patterns on flood damage cost in coastal Texas areas. Major flood events in the 36 Texan coastal watershed counties along the Gulf of Mexico were monitored from 2000 to 2017. Along with non-spatially weighted panel data models, we developed an advanced statistical model controlling for spatially correlated errors in flood loss and predicting flood loss with a set of time-series socioeconomic and environmental control variables. The results of the spatial panel data model reveal that long-term maintenance of larger, more irregular, more dispersed, less fragmented, and less connected patterns of GI will help to reduce county-level flood damage costs per capita over time. Most importantly, protecting larger patches within a closer proximity was found to be of the utmost importance for retaining the flood regulation services provided by GI. These findings suggest that planners and natural resource managers should enhance supportive land use policies to preserve existing GI and strategically locate new implementations in order to achieve long-term flood protection.
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    Applied Geography, 135, 102565
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    Accepted Manuscript
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