ERMIS-F has been developed for three pilot regions:
- the Limassol area, Cyprus, with a number of rain gauges installed to measure rainfall;
- the North Aegean area, Greece, with a pilot early warning system developed
- for the Kalloni (Rema Kyprianou) area in Lesvos;
- the island of Crete, Greece, with a pilot early warning system developed
- for the Nea Kydonia area in Chania.
The objective was to create a system that could support information, prevention, forecasting and management activities with respect to natural disaster risks, focusing on floods to begin with. The system would use existing data (digital cartographic information, field telemetry data, etc.) with the help of modern computing tools and models. In order to achieve this, the ERMIS-F system provides online web platform with a suitable interface to be freely available to everyone, from citizens to public authorities, from environmental organisations to professionals.
The main applications of the project are:
- a Geoportal, which acts as a geospatial repository of digital data related to flooding, including flood risk maps among others;
- a Knowledge Base database, which provides a variety of information that can be used for flood management;
- an Early Warning System;
- a Social Network that is specific for the ERMIS-F website and that can be adapted to the needs of specific users;
- a Crowdsourcing application to collect data on flood events in real time, by relying on public participation.
ERMIS-F also provides useful information on flooding, climate change etc. with specific focus on the Eastern Mediterranean region.
A number of strategic options were selected to support the viability of the ERMIS-F project in the future. These include:
- the use of open source software, which allows the project to continue its operation even if some of the beneficiaries are reluctant to support it. Open source software can give the opportunity to interested parties in Greece and Cyprus to adopt the ERMIS-F platform for their areas of interest;
- key project outcomes, such as digital flood risk maps and early warning systems remain useful after the project is completed, even if they are not updated;
- low operating costs of the system allow local authorities to finance the continuation of ERMIS-F by charging a non-profit amount for professional use;
- communication and advertising activities have been designed in such a way as to create interest from the public. In turn, this will provide the framework for continuing the operation of the ERMIS-F project after it is delivered.