26th June 2012
Labour calls for more spending on flood defences
The government should backtrack on its decision to reduce funding for flood defences, a Labour representative has suggested.
Shadow environment secretary Mary Creagh believes that recent flooding throughout regions such as Lancashire and Cumbria has indicated that more money would be useful when it comes to tackling the threat.
Torrential downpours affected the north of England last week, leading to flooding in West Yorkshire as well as the aforementioned areas.
Furthermore, the weather impacted many events across the country, including the Isle of Wight Festival, where thousands of music fans were left in dangerously muddy and wet conditions.
In other areas, many people had to be rescued by the emergency services after the rainfall flooded their homes, leaving them stranded.
Ms Creagh explained that a 30 per cent reduction in spending on flood defences has been seen since 2010, which could leave more homes and businesses vulnerable.
She emphasised that communities which have been affected by flooding should not have to encounter the same problem again.
"Every pound invested in flood defences saves £8 in costs further down the line. This weekend we had a reminder once again that floods are the greatest threat climate change poses to our country," Ms Creagh stressed.
She also called on the Environment Department to counter any efforts from the Treasury to cut even more funding from the UK's flood defence budget.
The UK weather has been typically unpredictable over recent years, with two dry winters followed be an unexpectedly warm March and then the wettest April in history.
Recent research from MoneySupermarket.com highlighted the threat that weather can have on British homes.
It found that more than half of the buildings insurance claims seen in winter 2011 resulted from the elements, representing an increase of 56 per cent from 2010.
Julie Fisher, head of home insurance at MoneySupermarket.com, underlined that the findings showed that winter weather can be a problem for residents and warned that Britons should not be complacent.
Posted by Penelope Fitzgerald
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