Environment Agency puts flooding costs at £3.2bn

Devastating floods cost the economy £3.2 billion, according to research released today by the Environment Agency.

Looking at the havoc high waters caused the around the country in 2007 the agency has estimated the cost at between £23,000 and £30,000 per flooded home - a total of £3.2bn.

The report released today (January 18)and published two months after the devastating Cumbria floods last year, illustrates the wide-ranging and substantial costs of flooding.

According to the agency it is the most 'comprehensive review' of the economic impact of the 2007 floods.

The summer 2007 floods also caused about £660m in damage to critical infrastructure and essential services.

Water supplies and treatment plants were the most affected, followed by roads, electricity supplies, agriculture and disruption to schools.

The agency's director of flood and coastal risk management, Robert Runcie, said: "It has now been almost two months since the devastating floods in Cumbria and although the full economic costs will not be known for some time, our report into the summer 2007 floods suggest that they are likely to be substantial.

"The 2007 flood cost homeowners, businesses, emergency services and others some £3.2bn, the high costs of flooding underline the importance for continued investment in reducing flood risk, particularly as climate change means that we are likely to see more severe and frequent flooding in future."

Luke Walsh



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