Geraint Davies, Labour MP for Swansea West, has said in Parliament this week that climate change means investment in flood defences will have to be even higher than previously thought following the 2007 floods, when higher investment was demanded in the Pitt review.
Challenging Elizabeth Truss, the Environment Secretary, in Parliament, Davies said “Does the Secretary of State not accept what is happening with climate change? Once-in-200-year events have now become once-in-100-years events, and it was accepted at the Paris conference that another 2 degrees would probably be added to world temperatures. There is surely no excuse for not investing more and more—even more than we planned to invest following the 2007 Pitt review. Will the Secretary of State urge the Government to invest even more than is proposed under the current agreement?”
The Environment Secretary responded by saying that the Government is “reviewing our national resilience and looking at our climate change models. Climate change is currently built into our six-year plan.” Following Davies’ point, she also said, “we clearly need to look at [climate change] again in the light of recent events.”
Speaking afterwards, Geraint Davies said “It is not good enough that the government simply reacts to recent flooding events, when the world has already accepted that we will see another 2 degrees rise in temperatures by 2050, which inevitably means more flooding.”
Davies added, “Before becoming an MP, my role through the Environment Agency was to provide flood defences across Wales, and we must adopt a more creative approach to land use management and storage, so that water is held upstream and also prevented from overflowing into our sewers by rainwater capture off roofs.”