August flood impact estimated at €9.9 billion
The government has estimated the total damage of August flooding and its impact on people, businesses and the environment at €9.9 billion. The estimate will serve as a basis for Slovenia's application for funding from the EU Solidarity Fund.
The floods affected 183 out of the country's 212 municipalities, and the extent of the affected area is estimated at 17,203 square kilometres, or 85% of the territory, Minister of Cohesion and Regional Development Aleksander Jevšek told reporters on 4 October.
"The assessment presented covers all aspects of the natural disaster, including efforts to provide alternatives to affected buildings, the repair of watercourses, the restoration of infrastructure, the protection and restoration of cultural heritage sites, and waste disposal and management," he said after the estimate was discussed by the government.
The estimate plays a key role in drafting an application for funding from the EU Solidarity Fund. "We will definitely submit the application by the deadline, meaning by 27 October," the minister said.
The August floods and landslides are believed to be the worst natural disaster ever to have hit Slovenia. Considering that and given that the damage has to be assessed in a short period of time, the government decided to use the international methodology Post Disaster Needs Assessment, which builds on national damage assessment methodologies.
"It enables a comprehensive and rapid assessment of the consequences and preparation of recovery plans, as well as a uniform and comparable cost estimation."
The minister illustrated the difference between direct damage and consequences by providing an example of landslide damage.
If a landslide drags away 15 hectares of forest, demolishes three buildings and destroys a road, the direct damage in material value is that which occurred at the time of the disaster.
However, there are also consequences to consider. "Three new houses have to be built, not on the landslide site, but somewhere else, and at the prices that apply today, not at the prices that applied then," Jevšek explained.