The campaign is calling for:
By 2025 £1bn per year to be spent on managing flood risk to keep pace with climate change.
A zero tolerance of inappropriate new developments in areas at risk of flooding.
Cross party consensus on ambitious long term solutions that manage all types of flood risk.
Flooding is a fact of life in the UK
Environment Agency data shows around 2 million homes in England and Wales are now at flood risk from rivers and sea. With that risk deemed ‘moderate’ or greater for over 500,000 of these, and a further 2.4 million homes at risk of surface water flooding, this is a serious problem facing the country.
Climate change and other factors like increased building and higher population density population mean the problem is getting worse. Without action to reduce flood risk, the effect on our homes, businesses, infrastructure and way of life is potentially devastating. So what can we do?
By 2025 £1bn per year to be spent on managing flood risk in order to keep pace with climate change
The most effective way to protect communities at risk of flooding is with well-maintained defences. Cuts in funding for these defences undermine their effectiveness in protecting millions of people from flooding.
We welcome the extra funding provided by the 2014 spending review after investment was drastically reduced in 2011. However, in order to address the growing flood risk through new and properly maintained defences, current and future UK governments must increase funding to £1 billion a year by 2025.
A zero tolerance of inappropriate new developments in areas at risk of flooding
Despite existing planning laws, 20,000 new properties are built on flood risk areas each year, including 4,000 in areas of significant flood risk.
Planning rules must be properly applied by local and regional planning authorities to all new developments. This means no inappropriate developments in flood risk areas and no developments that directly or indirectly increase the flood risk to other properties.
Tougher sanctions are also needed for developers or landowners who breach planning guidance relating to flood risk.
Cross-party consensus on ambitious long-term solutions that manage all types of flood risk
In order to properly tackle the problem of flooding there is a need to set cross-party, ambitious, long-term goals to better coordinate national and local strategies.
A step change in prioritising new solutions that consider all aspects of flooding, now and in the future, is needed. Over the long term, flood risk needs to be managed within an overall strategy of managing land and water.
Around 185,000 insurance claims at a cost of £3bn.
Around 39,400 insurance claims at a cost of £594m.
Around 18,700 insurance claims at a cost of £451m.
The RSPB is pleased to support the campaign for Flood Free Homes. Its goals – greater investment in flood defence, better planning and a halt to inappropriate development – will help protect our wildlife as well as our homes.
“Extreme weather events are becoming too common place to be ignored, flooding is the biggest natural threat faced by the UK. We urgently need a cross party consensus for managing floods, one that will address all forms of flood risk, one with an ambitious long term goal that will embrace innovation and investment to reduce flood risk.”
“Flooding destroys lives as well a property. Managing flood risk should be a national priority across Government, with everyone playing their part and we still have a long way to go.”
"With climate change pushing up flood risk, it's vital that the government massively ramps up its investment in flood defences and stops building homes on floodplains. It's not right that the human and economic costs of climate change are pushed onto those most vulnerable to flooding - we need to tackle this huge problem together."
Official supporting organisations
ABI An ABI campaign, supported by the following organisations:
Know Your Flood Risk Campaign
Launched in 2009 and provides practical guidance and support to help homeowners, businesses and property professionals prepare for, or mitigate, the risk of flooding.
Property Care Association’s Flood Protection Group
Launched in 2014 to give consumers confidence in finding contractors, assessors and products that are right for the job.
National Flood Forum
The National Flood Forum is a national charity dedicated to supporting and representing communities and individuals at risk of flooding.
Friends of the Earth
Inspired by the well-being of people and planet for over 40 years, Friends of the Earth's latest campaign aims to protect those most vulnerable to climate change, including communities at risk of flooding.
BRE Centre for Resilience
BRE’s Centre for Resilience leads research on flood resilience and has made substantial progress in recent years in the science and technology of resilient flood repair and on new build standards.