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Impacts of climate change on coastal flood risk in England and Wales: 2030–2100

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Jim Hall, Dr Mike Walkden


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Coastal flood risk is a function of the probability of coastal flooding and the consequential damage. The potential changes in coastal flood risk over the 21st Century have been analysed using a national-scale flood risk analysis methodology. If it is assumed that there will be no adaptation to increasing coastal flood risk, the expected annual damage in England and Wales due to coastal flooding is predicted to increase from the current £0.5 billion to between £1.0 billion and £13.5 billion, depending on the scenario of climate and socio-economic change. The proportion of national flood risk that is attributable to coastal flooding is projected to increase from roughly 50% to between 60% and 70%. Scenarios of adaptation to increasing risk, by construction of coastal dikes or retreat from coastal floodplains are proposed. These adaptations are shown to be able to reduce coastal flood risk to between £0.2 billion and £0.8 billion. The capital cost of the associated coastal engineering works is estimated to be between £12 billion and £40 billion. Non-structural measures to reduce risk can make a major contribution to reducing the cost and environmental impact of engineering measures.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Hall JW, Sayers PB, Walkden MJA, Panzeri M

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences

Year: 2006

Volume: 364

Issue: 1841

Pages: 1027-1049

Print publication date: 22/02/2006

ISSN (print): 1364-503X

ISSN (electronic): 1471-2962

Publisher: The Royal Society Publishing


DOI: 10.1098/rsta.2006.1752


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