A realistic assessment of fluvial and coastal flood risk in England and Wales

Penning-Rowsell, Edmund C. (2014) A realistic assessment of fluvial and coastal flood risk in England and Wales. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 40 (1). pp. 44-61. ISSN 0020-2754

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Abstract

Accurate national-scale economic assessments of flood risk should, first, allow policy and resource allocation to be determined sensibly by relating both to the scale of that risk and, second, provide a benchmark against which any possible future changes in risk can be assessed. This paper critiques the UK's National Flood Risk Assessment (NAFRA), its development for England and Wales over a decade, and its evaluation of economic fluvial and coastal flood risk. We find, when comparing the results with other data on flooding and the damage caused over 20 + years (including insurance claims), that NAFRA appears to overestimate the economic risk by between four- and five-fold (i.e. at c.£1.1bn p.a., as opposed to a central estimate here of £0.25bn p.a.). The flood problem faced is still serious, and may be increasing, but we suggest that an exaggeration has become embedded. The assessment models and their data need further enhancement if this situation is to be corrected and a realistic assessment made of the scale of the current fluvial and coastal flood risk. Only then will the results be adequately credible and hence useful.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Flood Hazard Research Centre
Item ID: 16404
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Depositing User: Josie Joyce
Date Deposited: 28 May 2015 11:26
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2016 14:34
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/16404

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