Climate Central forecast risks of flooding in Hounslow and Richmond much higher than previously indicated.

Climate Central is an independent group of scientists whose mission is to communicate climate change science, effects and solutions to the public and decision makers.

Their interactive map shows areas in West London that might previously been thought of as safe due to the Thames Barrier.

Speaking at the annual Coastal Futures Conference in January 2023 the chair of the Environment Agency , Alan Lovell spoke about the impact of the Thames Barrier;

“Opened in 1984, it’s been raised in anger 207 times, so about 5 and a half times a year. It was originally envisaged to be just once a year so that gives some illustration of the change, and not surprisingly it’s been on a rising, although not uniform, trend.

“Although the Barrier was built to hold back storm surges, since the 1990s increasingly intense rainfall events have also seen it raised at low tide on several occasions to create space for water that’s arrived from the other direction.

“We are constantly surveying the future, but we are reasonably confident that this Barrier will continue to provide protection until at least 2070, but we need to think creatively about how we can transform the estuary edges. We want Londoners to feel secure, to enjoy their river, and without being cut off from the river that makes London what it is.”

The barrier protects 125 square kilometres of land and over £320 billion of property and infrastructure.



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