Google has expanded coverage of its river flood alerts to 60 countries, including four towns in Ecuador.
Google announced the expansion of its Flood Hub program, saying that floods are one of the main climate threats to the safety and livelihoods of the world’s population.
According to Google, the floods affected 250 million people and caused a loss of USD 10 billion.
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That is why the flood hub created in 2018 now includes 60 countries including Ecuador.
Thanks to its advances in artificial intelligence and forecasting models based on machine learning, the program makes it possible to predict flood risk up to seven days in advance.
In total, 80 nations are now part of the project and there are four cities in Ecuador: Zapotal and Babahoyo (Los Rios), and Daule and Pula in Guayas.
For now, the Google service indicates that an increase in rainfall and flooding is not expected in these areas.
“We are working to expand flood forecast alerts to search engines and maps over the next 12 months,” the technology company said.
How does Flood Hub work?
Specifically, the Google Flood Hub provides river flood forecasts for regions around the world with a total population of 460 million, showing when and where rivers will overflow.
To do this, through artificial intelligence, it processes various publicly accessible data sources, such as weather forecasts or satellite images.
In addition, it combines a hydrological model, which predicts the amount of water carried by rivers; With a flood model that calculates which areas could be affected and how high the water could rise.
Among the new additions are some of the world’s regions with the highest percentage of the population exposed to flood risk, such as the Netherlands, Vietnam, Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia.
In addition, it includes countries with extreme weather events, including Belgium, Spain and Germany.