Another BBC report today showing the extent of the damage.
It will be many, many months, even a year or more, before things are back to normal for many people.
Apart from the obvious physical damage to property and infrastructure, being flooded is known to affect not only people’s mental health but their physical health as well.
“Bramhall, in Stockport, was also badly hit by flooding, with eleven people and four dogs being rescued, GMFRS said.
Jackie Carter, who lives there, said: “I was working from home yesterday and saw the water starting to come over the patio at the back of the house.
“Within two hours we were being evacuated. It’s the second time in three years – the first time we were out of our house for 11 months.
“You are not allowed to live in a house that has been contaminated through ‘black water’ – it seeps in everywhere… the floorboards, everything. I saved as much as I could, photographs and stuff like that, but there’s only a certain amount you can do.” “
From the new (26 November 2018) Met Office report on the challenge of climate change in the UK:
‘The projections will be factored into the UK’s flood adaptation planning and the Environment Agency’s advice to flood and coastal erosion risk management authorities.
Since 2010 government has invested a record £2.6 billion in flood defences, and we are on track to protect 300,000 more homes from flooding by 2021.
Chair of the Environment Agency, Emma Howard Boyd, said: “The UKCP18 projections are further evidence that we will see more extreme weather in the future – we need to prepare and adapt now, climate change impacts are already being felt with the record books being re-written.
“It is not too late to act. Working together – governments, business, and communities – we can mitigate the impacts of climate change and adapt to a different future.
“The Environment Agency cannot wall up the country, but will be at the forefront – protecting communities, building resilience, and responding to incidents.” ‘
Whether this event is due in some part to climate change may be impossible to know for sure, but there is no doubt that extreme weather events are becoming more frequent across the world. Now is the time to prepare Oxford for that future.
The planning application for the Oxford Flood Alleviation Scheme is being scrutinised; if approved Oxford’s flood risk will be reduced. Without it Oxford will remain largely undefended and future generations will rightly ask why something wasn’t done while the opportunity was there.
Nearly 200 countries, developing and developed, and including oil and gas producers, reached agreement at the COP21 conference in Paris to address climate change. This looks like the beginning of the end for fossil fuels.
The deal requires that countries should stem greenhouse gas emissions, with the goal of peaking emissions as soon as possible and continuing the reductions as the century progresses. The aim is to keep global temperatures from rising more than 2°C by 2100, ideally keeping the rise below 1.5°C.
The deal will encourage trillions of dollars to be spent adapting to the effects of climate change – including of course flooding – and developing renewable energy. Developed countries are to send at least $100 billion each year to developing countries beginning in 2020.
The agreement gives countries leeway in determining how to cut their emissions but they must report how they are doing. Progress will be reviewed every five years.
Some elements, like reporting requirements, are legally binding, others, such as the setting of emissions targets for individual countries, are non-binding.
This is potentially a game-changing agreement and has been widely welcomed. Hopefully the catastrophic possibility of irreversible and escalating change can be averted. Nevertheless, climate change is here with us and we can expect to see its effects on weather patterns continuing for the foreseeable future, with increased flooding a prominent result.
Let us hope that the implementation of the Paris agreement is as good as promised.