Top 20 towns at risk from flooding
Channel 4 Dispatches programme aired last night revealed the 20 towns most at risk from flooding. The Dispatches programme titled ‘Britain Under Water’ reports that increased building on flood plains has led to a rise in the amount of homes at significant risk of flooding.
The programme also reported that, as well as the potential threat to homes, over 2,000 energy installations are at significant risk of flooding. Concerns are being raised as to whether the authorities are setting aside sufficient resources to reduce the threat.
Boston in Lincolnshire is the most at risk due to an increasing number of houses being built on flood plains, over half of all homeowners in the area are at significant risk. Windsor featured second on this list with the London borough of Enfield and King’s Lynn also featuring high in the table.
The chief executive of the Environment Agency, Baroness Young, is urging insurers to refuse insurance to houses built on flood plains against advice. Baroness Young has requested that insurers could help by hardening their stance against those choosing to live in new-builds in areas at risk of flood.
This summer, England experienced the worst floods for 60 years which have cost around £3 billion according to the Association of British Insurers (ABI). The ABI is calling on the Government for a comprehensive assessment of flood risk and a programme of sustained long-term investment.
A spokesman for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) said the Government is committed to effectively managing flood and coastal erosion risk and said spending has nearly doubled in cash terms over the last decade to an estimated £600 million in 2007-08.
DEFRA concluded that this will increase to £800 million in 2010-11, with a steady increase in annual budgets between now and then. Flood and coastal erosion risk management is a long-term business and requires thorough assessment and proper planning if resources are to best reduce risk.