Thousands of homes set to be built in high risk flood zones

Around 10,000 new homes have been allocated for development in high flood risk areas across 10 local authorities hit by flooding, a new investigation has found.

High risk flood areas are categorised by the Environment Agency as flood zone 3 – an area of land having a 1 in 100 chance of flooding in any given year from river sources or a greater probability of 1 in 200 of flooding from the sea.

A new investigation carried out by Greenpeace’s journalism unit Unearthed has found that 9,688 homes have been allocated for development in 10 local authorities with the highest percentage of land defined as being at high risk of flooding.

The NGO compared the council’s housing allocations listed in councils’ five-year plans for housing supply with the Environment Agency’s flood mapping tool.

It found that more than 5,000 homes have been proposed in high risk zones in Lincolnshire. 

A 3,100-home development near Stainforth has also been proposed, less than two miles from Fishlake, the village where hundreds of people were forced from their homes because of flooding this week. 

Last year, ENDS showed that the proportion of new residential addresses created in areas of high flood risk in England rose for the fourth year in a row. The proportion of new residential addresses created in flood zone 3 areas stood at 11% in 2016/17 – up from 9% the previous year.

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