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Britain is at bursting point and its flood barriers need to be updated

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By illuminem briefings 🌎

· 2 min read


illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Conversation or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Britain faces increasing flood risks, with one in six homes currently vulnerable
However, climate change is increasing the frequency and intensity of storms, pushing storm surge barriers to their maintenance limits and necessitating updates and new constructions

🔭 The context: The UK's existing flood barriers, such as those in Thames, Ipswich, Hull, and Boston, have historically protected millions of people and significant infrastructure
However, as climate change intensifies, these barriers face more frequent use, exceeding their design limits and maintenance schedules, thereby raising concerns about their long-term efficacy and reliability

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: The challenge of updating and maintaining flood barriers in the UK highlights a global issue of adapting existing infrastructure to the escalating threats posed by climate change
Effective management and upgrade of such defences are crucial for protecting communities and ecosystems from the increasing risks of extreme weather events

⏭️ What's next: The UK is planning new flood defenses and updating existing ones, like the Thames barrier, to cope with future challenges

💬 One quote: "As sea-levels rise and storms get stronger, movable flood barriers are going to be called into action more often." (Sunke Trace-Kleeberg and Ivan Haigh, University of Southampton)


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