• search

Climate change puts pressure on London defences

Written by: Staff

London is mustering its flood defences more often as global warming raises sea levels, the UK government's Chief Scientific Adviser Sir David King told a Reuters conference on climate change and investment.

''The biggest indicator of change that is already happening is usage of the Thames Barrier,'' King told the conference late yesterday.

''The Thames Barrier was designed to be used once every two or three years and in that period after it was built in 1980, it was indeed used once every two or three years. We're now using it six times a year.'' The direct cost of a breach in the flood defences would exceed 30 billion pounds (52.70 billion dollars) directly, King added, not including the ''indirect'' damage to people's lives.

Scientists predict that heat-trapping carbon dioxide (CO2), produced by burning fossil fuels, can raise the temperature of the Earth, and so melt ice caps and cause flooding.

The most recent time that CO2 levels were certainly higher than now was 55 million years ago, when CO2 was more than double current levels and the sea about 100 metres higher, King said.

King saw climate change posing the biggest threat in Britain from changes to rainfall patterns and storm damage to coastlines.


For Daily Alerts

For Breaking News from Oneindia
Get instant news updates throughout the day.

Notification Settings X
Time Settings
Clear Notification X
Do you want to clear all the notifications from your inbox?
Settings X
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. This includes cookies from third party social media websites and ad networks. Such third party cookies may track your use on Oneindia sites for better rendering. Our partners use cookies to ensure we show you advertising that is relevant to you. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on Oneindia website. However, you can change your cookie settings at any time. Learn more