Posts Tagged ‘rivers’

Risk of Flooding from Rivers and Sea Dataset Released as Open Data

January 5, 2015 Leave a comment

The Environment Agency announced at the end of 2014 that it was releasing the Risk of Flooding from Rivers and Sea dataset (formerly known as the National Flood Risk Assessment dataset, NAFRA) as an open data resource. The flood data are to be made available under the Open Government Licence (OGL) and provide an indication of the likely flood risk (low, moderate or significant) from rivers and sea. The data are available to download from the site and the Environment Agency also plans to publish the data on their DataShare site ASAP.

Risk of Flooding from Rivers and Sea

Risk of Flooding from Rivers and Sea

Important as this latest open data resource is, especially given the extent and severity of flooding in many parts of England last winter, the usefulness of this type of flood data is often best illustrated in combination with other datasets such as flood outlines and  waste site boundaries; the factors contributing to flood risk are both complex and varied. However, many of these other datasets are not available under the same open licence agreement and are subject to restrictions on commercial use and re-sharing. This variation in licensing poses a number of issues for data analysts working to provide holistic interpretations of past trends and recent events, and potentially limits both the scope of the analysis and the audience for the results.

The release of the flood risk data under the OGL is a significant move for the Environment Agency; will this prompt the release of other related environmental datasets under the same open access licence?


Categories: Public Domain Data Tags: , , ,

European Atlas of the Seas

June 2, 2014 1 comment

The European Atlas of the Seas, launched in 2011, provides open access to a variety of global and European maritime and geographical datasets covering eight main themes:

  • Geography
  • Nature – bathing water quality, protected areas
  • Tourism – museums, aquariums
  • Security and safety – major oil spills, accident density
  • People and employment – coastal population, employment in the fishing industry
  • Transport and energy – shipping for goods and passenger transport.
  • Governance and European policies – fisheries local action groups (FLAGs), regional advisory councils (RACs)
  • Fisheries and aquaculture – fishing quotas, state of fish stocks, fish farms


The Atlas is continually updated with revised and additional datasets provided by the contributing departments, agencies and international organisations including UNESCO, FAO, USDA FSA, USGS, NOAA, Esri and IHQ. Some of the datasets are available to download in shapefile and KML format, and the accompanying metadata provide details on the data sources referenced.