Congratulations to Royal Haskoning and Moray Council for promoting a flood alleviation scheme that requires demolition of houses in the flood plain (NCE 9 February). This approach is inevitably going to form part of our portfolio of flood risk management strategies in the future, and the sooner we recognise it the better.
It is a bold step, and no doubt a painful one for those whose homes have to be destroyed, but increasingly this will be the only viable option. The alternative of building ever higher defences just encourages further development in the defended area, creating an unsustainable situation.
The option of removing properties and infrastructure from the flood plain is implicit in the title of Making Space for Water, the recently published strategy document from the Department for the Environment, Food & Rural Affairs. It should also be strongly reflected in the forthcoming Planning Policy Statement (PPS25) regarding development in flood risk areas.
Encouraging the development of brownfield sites in flood risk areas may seem appropriate in the face of a shortage of suitable land, but in today's world of climate change we would do well to promote more sustainable solutions.
Charlie Rickard (F), 4 Millards Lane, Lode, Cambridge CB5 9ES