- Flooding (and blame thereof)
Obviously a hot topic at the minute given the recent storms and the impending rainfall expected from Storm Dennis. But I’m sat here watching the news with a constant line of flood affected people (or potentially affected) blaming the Environment Agency, demanding compensation, asking where the local authorities are etc etc. Now then, obviously my sympathies go out to anyone adversely affected, but come on! Reminds me of people who complain about aircraft noise after buying a house next to an airport.
I’m sure many flood defences are worth having but is it really worth a multi million ££ investment to stop the flooding of half a dozen properties!? At what point do the local authority just opt for a managed retreat on flood plains like we do now in the Yorkshire coast where the glacial till is no match for rising sea levels?Posted 2 days agotjmooreSubscriber
Where I live I was told no flood defences as too few property at risk (a few dozen though). However just down the road there was a big costly flood defence scheme… exactly where the council intended building loads of flats (and have, plus are planning a huge amount more). Hmm.
This being river flooding, not coastal.Posted 2 days agoMoreCashThanDashSubscriber
A few years ago there were some floods in Kent that made the news.
Mother in laws neighbour had been brought up in one of the houses that was in the news, and simply said “Every winter we moved most of the furniture upstairs as it flooded every year”
Defences had been put in, no floods for years/decades, houses changed hands, memories faded. Freak weather – maybe natural, maybe global warming – and all hell breaks lose when the defences failed and “someone” is to blame.
Flooding is awful – been on the ground in flood areas when I did insurance claims – but wider society cannot afford to put in defences to protect some of these places. Wider society’s money might be better spent either moving people elsewhere, or setting up a central flood insurance scheme.
Just you wait till the Thames Barrier fails. Maybe not soon, but it will happenPosted 2 days agomattyfezMember
If it’s flooding from rain/rivers from higher ground, flood defences are just treating the symptoms rather than the cause.
It’s barren high moorland that’s the problem, the water runs straight off and causes problems lower down.
What needs to happen is to plant vast amounts of trees (which also have other benefits).
That said, there’s not a right lot the environment agency can do if its not public land.Posted 2 days agooldtennisshoesSubscriber
Very difficult, but I took the view a couple of years ago to move from an at risk area to a much lower risk area (top of a hill). I was lucky to be able to afford to do so. Things have changed in the past relatively short term that some people can’t guard against. Moorland replanting would help in some areas.Posted 2 days agoblurtySubscriber
Why would the Thames barrier fail? As I understand it it has triple redundancy – two back up processes? It’s operational life is expected to end around 2070 now (originally 2023) isostatic rebound/ sea level rise hasn’t accelerated as feared when it was designed in the 60s.Posted 2 days agotrail_ratMember
Very difficult, but I took the view a couple of years ago to move from an at risk area to a much lower risk area (top of a hill). I was lucky to be able to afford to do so.
We bought a significantly smaller /more expensive house than we were otherwise presented with had we been willing to buy near flooding….. Every time we looked they told us *no we have not flooded* …. Watching these houses since….yep sure they have flooded.
When presented with that it’s easy to see how folk are tempted. (Obviously talking about home owners rather than renters)Posted 2 days agochestrockwellMember
Used to flood in Skipton quiet often but then they made some defences a few years back that seem to have done the trick.
Can you believe it is not a statutory part of the Fire Service’s job to respond to flooding even though we are the first people the public ring? As it’s not ‘part of our job’ the Government does not fund us for it.Posted 2 days ago
No, I can’t tell you the departments within the EA who are cockwombles.
At a guess, they’ll be the ones who oversee river flows, levels, drainage and dare I say: ‘river management’. Also the separate department who look at tide times, ranges and how these might be affected by weather.
Neither of these two departments regard it necessary to talk to or share information with each other. In fact, the former ‘department’ appear to have sub departments, according to ‘higher’, ‘middle’ and ‘lower’ reaches of rivers. These sub departments also consider it unnecessary to communicate in any shape or form with any other part of the EA, or in fact the Broads Authority (who, like the EA, are an unelected quasi local government faction).
This organisation wide existence of splendid isolation and point blank refusal to look out of the window, or heaven forbid, go and have a paddle in the foot deep water where it’s meant to be a road, or go and see how remarkably muddy the bottom of the river is now that there is now water left in it, is truly breathtaking in its arrogance that the computer says no, so therefore the real world answer is, no.
Cockwombles. Utter cockwombles.
Edit. Orinoco isn’t a cockwomble. He was my favourite 🤗Posted 2 days ago
Actually, I’ve started, so I’m going to carry on.
For hundreds and hundreds of years, the flat and boggy part of Norfolk and the Fens were managed very successfully by the people who needed to survive in it. They learned that to do so required efficient effort, mainly because they were too busy trying to keep themselves alive.
No electricity, no heavy machinery, no hydraulic rams, just hands and basic shovels and spades, which meant that they built dwellings where it didn’t flood. It also meant that they created drainage systems or dykes and… guess what? They maintained them, they kept them at a sufficient depth so that excess rain or tidal water was absorbed by the extra capacity. They had learnt wisdom.
Wisdom is applied knowledge.
Our forebears needed wisdom to stay alive and procreate. With the state of humanity now, it begs the question whether our forebears really needed to bother.
Nowadays, no one wants to take responsibility for the dykes that served the marsh lands so well for well over a thousand years. It costs money to maintain them. Local councils don’t want to know. Private land owners certainly don’t want to know. Farmers… well let’s just say that the farmers don’t want to know. The EA, they don’t see it’s worthwhile to clear the dykes, because they can control sluice gates with one person on a computer.
Except they don’t.
I’m getting bored of this. Hopefully you get my point. If any of you know any high ranking cockwombles in the Norfolk division, please, send them over. Thank you.Posted 2 days ago
So some of the FCRM teams were out the other night shutting flood gates and monitoring the high tides and erecting flood barriers which were expected to be higher due to the high winds but I guess they read that on a fortune cookie.
And since September the rain has been relentless with some areas still dealing with all the rainfall that fell and the forthcoming storm Dennis is presenting further problems due to already high water tables and river levels. Teams are on 24hr standby and a lot will be out over the weekend clearing trash screens, culverts, bridge holes and still dealing with windblown trees from the last storm. Some of the teams, over the past few months, were working 8-hour shifts 24/7 for weeks at a time dealing with flooding even with some volunteering to work in other areas to help out on mutual aid.
As for sluice gates being controlled by someone on sitting at a computer that’s the first I’ve ever heard of it.
And hundreds and hundreds of years ago I’m pretty sure you didn’t have the large towns. city’s, villages and all the infrastructure that goes with that add to the problem.
But I guess its piss easy to sit there and be a keyboard warrior. As you say I’m bored with it especially with someone as ignorant as you.Posted 2 days ago
Give yourself a break @kuco!
Read my post before coming over all sanctimonious please. As for my ignorance on the matter, I’ll let that one slide.
The drainage dykes that have served the area very well for well over a thousand years have been neglected for the last 35 years. Which is why people are out at midnight clearing the blocked culverts and putting up barriers.
Because no one wanted to foot the bill or continue paying for something that didn’t appear to be an issue because they were regularly maintained and kept in good working order.
The relatively new agencies do not see it necessary to reinstate the dykes, rather they use automatic water level monitoring stations that activate sluice gates in perfect isolation to each other and okay, there are no people involved in that process, which makes it even more dangerous. River Bure I’ll cite as an example. Please go check where the monitoring stations are, where the automatic sluices are and how these are linked to high and low water times at Gorleston. And when you do finds that last bit, ffs let someone in the EA know, because they can’t find it.Posted 2 days agokelvinSubscriber
I hope those smugly saying they chose to spend more money to buy a home away from flood risk remember that many people can’t afford to make such choices and rent what they can. Also flood defences and alleviation works are to protect utilities, transport infrastructure, schools etc, not just homes.Posted 2 days agohoneybadgerxSubscriber
One of the biggest problems we have is there isn’t a direct link between a Local Authority giving planning permission, the developer constructing a development, the owner who gets flooded and the insurance company who pays up (if the pay, but that’s a different matter). Until the loop is formed there will continue to be issues. That said, a lot of insurance companies are very much upping their game when it comes to climate change risk and flooding, but until they all take a united stand then developments without sufficient resilience will keep being built.Posted 2 days agohoneybadgerxSubscriber
Also flood defences and alleviation works are to protect utilities, transport infrastructure, schools etc, not just homes.
This. A far more holistic approach needs to be taken to resilience. It’s no good having a home protected from flooding but you’re trapped in it because all your transport links have been cut-off. Likewise it’s great to have resilient public transport but if everywhere it takes you too is flooded then it doesn’t help.Posted 2 days ago
I doubt the loop will ever be formed, too much personal and corporate greed involved.
Cite one example from the late 90’s in a village called Farringdon on the A32 just south of Alton in Hampshire. Property developer obtained planning permission to build a number of new houses in the village, with a proportion of them classed as ‘low cost social housing’ to swing the deal. Except, where those were to be built, the older people in the village said wouldn’t work because in times of heavy rainfall, that empty part of the village, just by the main road that runs through it, became a pond.
These people were laughed at at the planning meeting.
Suffice to say in the winter of 2000, when it rained much more than the ‘relentless’ rain we’ve endured thus far this winter, a waterbourne formed and ran alongside and then on the A32, effectively closing the road for around 10 weeks. Because the deep ditches that were running beside the road had filled up with vegetation and detritus because the Drey men were no longer an expense Hampshire County Council wanted to pay.
This river, flowed very neatly all along the A32 and came to rest in the now occupied with housing association homes bit in the centre of the village. The water level got to the height of the ground floor windows.
The houses were subsequently demolished and the area is once again an empty village green.
Wisdom – applied knowledge. Works much better than the arrogance of youth.Posted 2 days ago
Think I read on here a few years ago when this subject came up was that land owners/farmers/agricultural policies have a lot to answer for.
Indeed. Landowners were quick to blame a lack of dredging for flooding on the Somerset Levels: the real reason land management practices. Easier to point a finger at the EA though.Posted 2 days ago
Easier to point a finger at the EA though.
Posted 2 days ago
The stated purpose of the Environment Agency is: “to protect or enhance the environment, taken as a whole” so as to promote “the objective of achieving sustainable development”. This protection includes threats such as pollution and flooding.
Although I doubt if you’re aware of the Broads Internal Drainage Board (who are part of the WLMA – the Water Management Alliance) their remit of responsibility along with the EA, whose remit is for the main rivers and coastal defences. There is also the Broads Authority.
So, we have 3 agencies, unfortunately because in the region it is the EA who are responsible for the main rivers, which ultimately carry the volume to the North Sea, it matters little what the other two do if the volume flow is being constantly interrupted and messed about with so the volume isn’t able to go anywhere.
Work of fiction? Hmmmm. Check your facts buddy.Posted 2 days ago
Work of fiction? Hmmmm. Check your facts buddy.
It was pretty obvious that you wouldn’t be able to leave it alone.
For the record, I’ve twenty years’ experience of working with the Environment Agency on environmental permits, waste, pollution control,dredging, water quality, and flood defences. So I have a pretty good idea of their strengths and weaknesses, and to know when someone is talking out of their fundament.Posted 2 days ago
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