Today’s Financial Times reports that the number of UK households at risk of flooding could be set to more than double by 2050 due to climate change, according to financial data provider MSCI.
The figures referenced in the report were released by the Environment Agency in May this year as part of its Long-term Investment Scenarios research which sets out the various levels of risk faced in England under different climate outcomes.
This research recommends that if we are to avoid risk getting worse, in the long-term as a nation we need spend an average of over £1 billion per year in flood and coastal protection over the next 50 years.
Julie Foley, Director of Flood Risk Strategy and National Adaptation at the Environment Agency said:
As the population grows, we are likely to see the number of properties built on the flood plain almost double over the next 50 years. It is vitally important all new development is resilient to flooding and coastal change and enables growth in a sustainable and climate resilient way.
“Our new floods and coastal erosion strategy looks at how spatial planning has a key role to play in managing and mitigating future flood risk. The Environment Agency will continue to work closely with developers, planners and others to ensure that we see the right kind of sustainable growth in the right places.
The government is already investing £2.6 billion over six years, delivering more than 1,000 projects to better protect 300,000 homes from flooding and coastal erosion.
In due course, the government will also set out its policies to better prepare the country for flood and coastal erosion in a government policy statement. The Environment Agency will also be updating its national strategy for flood and coastal erosion risk management, which sets out a long term plan for tackling, preparing for and adapting to the additional risks that climate change will bring.