Coastal flood risk is a function of the probability of coastal flooding and the consequential damage. Scenarios of potential changes in coastal flood risk due to changes in climate, society and the economy over the twenty-first century have been analysed using a national-scale quantified flood risk analysis methodology. If it is assumed that there will be no adaptation to increasing coastal flood risk, the expected annual damage in England and Wales due to coastal flooding is predicted to increase from the current £0.5 billion to between £1.0 and £13.5 billion, depending on the scenario of climate and socio-economic change. The proportion of national flood risk that is attributable to coastal flooding is projected to increase from roughly 50% to between 60 and 70%. Scenarios of adaptation to increasing risk, by construction of coastal dikes or retreat from coastal floodplains, are analysed. These adaptations are shown to be able to reduce coastal flood risk to between £0.2 and £0.8 billion. The capital cost of the associated coastal engineering works is estimated to be between £12 and £40 billion. Non-structural measures to reduce risk can make a major contribution to reducing the cost and environmental impact of engineering measures.
One contribution of 20 to a Theme Issue ‘Sea level science’.
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