Introduction Fathom-Global 3.0 is the most robust and comprehensive global flood map in the world. It revolutionises how insurers, financial institutions, engineers, corporates and governments can understand and integrate flood hazard and climate change data into their risk operations
Product key features
~30-meter resolution globally
1 arcsecond data, based on FABDEM, our latest complete map of the Earth’s terrain
Users can access climate conditioned flood hazard data for any projected combination of future year and climate scenario up to 2100
Inland & coastal
Fluvial, pluvial and coastal flooding – Assess the risk from different types of flood including defended and undefended views
Underpinned by an unparalleled Digital Elevation Model (DEM) combining FABDEM with the best available local data
Fathom’s API allows instant on-demand access to all of Fathom’s spatial data
Depths for return periods between 5 and 1000 years
Risk Scores (Relative Risk and Risk Category) for each type of flooding
About the model Fathom’s global flood map is unique in harnessing world-leading modelling techniques and combining these with the very latest developments in hydrology, geospatial data and climate science. This has, for the first time, produced complete coverage of inland and coastal perils for the whole world, under multiple climate scenarios
Fathom’s new global flood map combines FABDEM, LiDAR and MERIT-Hydro, the best terrain and hydrography data currently available. These data provide the most accurate view of the ground surface elevation and the location of all rivers.
By coupling the latest topography and hydrography datasets with cutting-edge hydraulic modelling techniques, Fathom has produced truly world-leading flood data for the whole planet. All methods have been peer-reviewed and published in the most respected scientific journals, representing a major advance in our ability to understand flooding at the global scale.
The most important component of any global flood map is the terrain data. The global flood map is underpinned by FABDEM, and enriched with LiDAR data where it is available. Learn more about FABDEM here.
Flood models require complex hydrodynamic solutions to be solved at high resolutions. At large scales, this presents a computational obstacle.
To overcome this we have pioneered the computational representation of floodplain dynamics. This includes the development of several state-of-the art model components, made possible through collaborative academic research.
These include features that enable us to not only represent every river channel in the world, but also determine its width, depth and flow velocity. More accurate representation of river channels enables us to produce better flood maps.
Fathom-Global 3.0 enables users to quantify and mitigate flood hazards, and understand changes in risk under future climate scenarios.
Made possible through Fathom’s Climate Dynamics framework that allows users to examine any inland or coastal flood peril for a wide range of climate options.
This is the only technology on the market to date that not only utilises the latest in climate science, but also provides users with the flexibility to meet varying regulatory and reporting requirements and to understand the impact of changing flood risk over time.
Crucially, Climate Dynamics also allows users to understand the uncertainty present in future climate projections.
This will prove vital to financial institutions, insurers, engineers and large corporations who are compelled by regulation and legislation to provide increasingly more detailed and precise reporting.
What is in Fathom’s Global Flood Map?
Depths by return period
Inundation depths for a variety of return periods from 5 to 1000 years provide information on how flood hazard varies by frequency of flooding.
For fluvial (river) and coastal perils these are available in defended and undefended form.
Users can customise the data to their needs for any return period, climate scenario and temperature change up to 2100.
We provide two types of Risk Score: Relative Risk and Risk Category.
Relative Risk provides an estimate of average annual loss for a uniform exposure on a scale of 0 to 1,000,000. This allows you to quickly determine the risk levels for a location relative to others.
Relative Risk takes into account defence fragility and is available for different flood sub-peril combinations.
Risk Category provides a score between 1 and 100. Categories 1 to 5 identify locations outside but proximate to the 1 in 1000 year flood. Categories 6 – 100 are a grouping of Relative Risk.
Fathom’s Global Flood Map provides inundation depth and risk score information for a variety of different perspectives.
These include fluvial (river), pluvial (surface) and coastal flooding and defended and undefended views.
Climate options include future years through to 2100 and Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs), Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) and Network for Greening the Financial Sector (NGFS) scenarios.
Climate uncertainty is represented by allowing users to select a range of different percentiles.
How can I access Fathom’s Global Flood Map?
Fathom’s new API has been created to give customers and partners the option to access our map data on-demand without having to host it in-house.
For customers with their own platforms or dealing with sensitive information who wish to consume the data on-premise, Fathom-Global 3.0 can be provided directly as a set of GeoTIFF files.
The evolution of Fathom’s Global Flood Map
The most comprehensive global view of flood available at the time, Fathom launched its first flood hazard dataset in 2015.
Built on 30 years of published scientific research, it used an early iteration of our global terrain data. We knew that floodplain topography and small flow pathways were poorly defined in some areas and that we could significantly improve on this in future releases.
Groundbreaking flood hazard data:
- Terrain data: custom-processed SRTM
- Discharge estimation: Global RFFA
- River channels: HydroSHEDS+
- Efficient Fathom hydraulics models
- Fathom model automation framework.
The second iteration of Fathom-Global featured major enhancements. Better representation of river Channels and the ability to produce plausible event footprints were groundbreaking advances.
Our research programme was already pointing the way to even more significant developments to come, especially in our understanding of terrain and river channels.
Major leap in our understanding flood:
- MERIT-DEM terrain dataset
- River channels: MERIT-Hydro
- Plausible event footprints.
A step change in risk professionals’ ability to understand flooding at the global scale.
Coupling the latest topography and hydrography datasets with cutting-edge hydraulic modelling. Our latest terrain data, the first global digital elevation model with forest and buildings removed at a ~30-meter resolution and employing the most advanced representation of river channels available, including estimations of location, size and depth.
State of the art in flood data science:
- Fluvial, pluvial and coastal. The first complete global view of flood hazard
- Climate dynamics. Maps across time periods, warming levels and emissions scenarios
- API. On demand access to all of our spatial data
- 100% of river channels modelled.
Get in touch Interested in Fathom-Global 3.0? Get in touch to learn more.
Fathom provide a first-rate product and service based upon cutting-edge research and methodologies, which are both robust and transparent. Their flood data sets are global, consistent and high calibre. Most importantly, Fathom is a responsive and collaborative firm who consistently deliver.
Climate Engine and Fathom have been in partnership for some time and our work with BMO’s Climate Institute is an example of how cutting edge flood modeling plays a key role in helping the bank and their clients mitigate risks associated with the physical impacts of climate change.
Fathom’s most recent release – Fathom-Global 3.0 – provides flood maps for anywhere in the world, and at improved levels of detail, providing information to help decision makers better manage their future flood risk by considering climate change and the associated uncertainty.
Fathom’s flood hazard and risk data products are critical to assessing risks to Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure. In this way, their data impacts the delivery of services relied on by the 400 million global users of Office 365, Outlook.com and OneDrive, and the 48 million members of Xbox.