From the dawn of civilisation, society has been affected by
floods. Communities established near rivers and along the coast
have been particularly affected. As civilisation has developed, it
has adapted to flooding, making buildings resistant to flooding and
protecting communities with flood defences. Yet even the most
highly developed parts of the world are still at risk from
devastating floods today.
Projections relating to climate change indicate that extreme
weather and sea level rise are likely to increase the risk of
flooding. CIWEM is working to improve ways in which flood waters
are managed so that they better link in with the water cycle.
CIWEM's work on Flooding
CIWEM's work on flooding issues is coordinated through the Rivers and Coastal Group and WaPUG (CIWEM's Urban Drainage Group). CIWEM also
produces the Journal of Flood Risk Management.
The 2007 Floods and the subsequent review led by Sir Michael
Pitt stimulated much debate about how best to tackle the
management of flood risk in the future. Against a background of
creating a more joined up approach, the need for sustainable
solutions and the challenges of climate change, the ICE, CIWEM,
RIBA, RICS, RTPI, RUSI and the Landscape Institute produced
Policy Statement in 2009 to inform and guide their
members and the wider industry.
Realignment - Around a third of the coastline
surrounding England and Wales is currently protected by defences
designed to reduce the risk to people and properties from coastal
flooding and erosion. Scientists expect this risk to increase
substantially in the future, mostly as a result of climate change.
In some areas, maintaining the current line of defence will become
increasingly cost-prohibitive and, more importantly, unsustainable.
CIWEM have produced a Briefing
Report on the subject exploring the available
Policy Position Statements: