Tuesday, November 27

How much flooding does it take?

The government continues to churn out damaging changes to legislation and policy that have long term negative impacts to the environment. At the same time, this year has seen some of the most extreme weather in UK history. Over 200 flood warnings this week alone.

A rundown of the year so far:

After warnings of drought conditions and water shortages few were expecting what was about to happen.
Strong winds and snow fall hit the UK with tens of thousands without electricity.
Heavy rains led to flooding in April.

Heavy rains caused flash flooding in Northern Ireland.
At the end of the month two storms moved across Wales and England, triggering 10 flood warnings and 47 alerts. Thousands of properties were again without electricity and landslides cause rail disruptions.

Flood warnings and alerts were issued across the UK.
A care home had to be evacuated.
The South West of England was issued with a severe weather warning.
A Dorset couple were killed in a landslide whilst the county had 150 flood warnings.

More flooding in Devon, Tyne and Wear, Yorkshire and Scotland.
Flash floods in Cumbria, causing landslips.

Wales, Yorkshire and North East England hit by flooding.
The foundations of a block of flats were washed away, the block eventaully had to be demolished.
Local authorities asked the government to help with costs.

Hundreds of flood warnings across the country.
Many homes flooded.
Insurance industry issue a warning that thousands of properties may be uninsurable next year.

Overall insurance costs for the year are likely to be £1billion or more.

Today Cameron visited flooded areas to talk to people about their problems and in the process stated the government was doing all it can do, but insurance companies need to do what insurance companies are supposed to do - insure.

However the fact is the government isn't doing all it can. The only solution is a greater effort to cut CO2, that is the only thing that will return climate to a state that produces reduced flooding risks, nothing else will.

In the mean time, home owners that are looking to the government to stop flooding with the use of  technology, think again, any defence will eventually be breached as weather gets more extreme.

Lets hope next year will be dryer, at least until the next record breaking year of flooding, caused by our CO2 producing addiction.

Friday, November 16

Lots happening all over the place!

This weekend First buses bring their new timetable and bus numbers into action. The switch occurs on Sunday I think.

There is a lot of public support for the Fareham Photovoltaic solar farm. From what I have seen of Vogts plans, they appear to have done a lot of homework. This includes research into aviation issues, biodiversity and environmental managment. Even the councils officers seem to like it. Implementation of the project would increase biodiversity since the land is currently a typical mono-crop farm.

Haven't heard much about the smaller solar farm proposed near Clanfield. In theory that is less controversial, especially as it is near a big electricity sub station.

Bad news about Ash trees though. I think with climate change and aggressive diseases attacking our native species, we are going to see some big changes in the UK tree population in the coming 100 years.

However Havant Borough Tree Wardens got a load of cash to plant over 5000 trees.

The battle of Scratchface lane continues over at Bedhampton. It's the only place where locals have any common sense.

Chris Heaton-Harris continues to tilt at windmills

I recently posted an analysis of statements Heaton-Harris made on BBC Radio 4 about wind turbines.

This week he continued his Don Quixote act and has been caught on camera by Greenpeace, he continues to mislead the public and in this case attacks the RSPB:

The BBC also posted an article and video:

Birds and wind turbine info:

A Summary and Comparison of Bird Mortality from Anthropogenic Causes with an Emphasis on Collisions
Wallace P. Erickson, Gregory D. Johnson, and David P. Young Jr

Bird Mortality:

Wind Turbines <0.01%
Buildings 58%
Cats 10.6%
Pesticides 7.1%

Migratory Bird Mortality fact sheet - US Fish and Wildlife Service