Increasing threat of flash floods in London calls for immediate action

Increasing threat of flash floods in London calls for immediate action

by Pranali Mehta

As the possibility of large flash floods reportedly grows in London as a result of climate change, there is now a serious threat of people drowning.

The threat is terribly severe, as per a report released by a London Councils taskforce this month, since there is no cohesive strategy or authority in place to deal with the city's growing flood threat.

The report claims that more than a month's worth of rain poured in London in an hour for several days during the citywide disruption that hit last July when heavy downpour swept through London on numerous instances.

On the 12th of July, for instance, 48.5mm of rain fell was recorded in an hour at Shepherd's Bush, whereas the average rainfall for the month was 46.8mm.

Metro stations were flooded throughout London, hospitals were shut, and the flood consumed around 1,000 residential properties. As downpours become more frequent from climate change taking root, there is now a genuine possibility that surface water flooding may cause significantly more havoc in London than before.

The taskforce's report was presented to the London Councils, a cross-party institution that represents London's 32 boroughs and the City of London, earlier this month.

According to the report, the biggest impacts of the flooding were noted in the city's east and north.

The report further shows that London has a rising amount of impenetrable surfacing and that it is still fundamentally reliant on a Victorian drainage system that was not built to effectively deal with the city's existing and future projections of a growing population.

In London, there is currently no institution that is responsible for dealing with surface water flooding, as there is an inadequacy of funds to address the risk, and a severe lack of awareness regarding the threats caused by flooding surface water. Major upgrades in all these areas are critical to deal with future repercussions.

The report warned that such disruptions to food supply and infrastructure would cost more than £1 billion each year. Overall, at least eight individual areas of risk have been deemed likely to cost the government in excess of £1 billion per year by 2050.

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Pranali Mehta

A chemical engineer by qualification, Pranali Mehta dutifully walked down the slated path and worked in a chemical firm for a year. Her passion for writing however, pushed her into experimenting with the same as a career. With over three years of experience in content writ Read more...