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World at Risk: Summer 2009

Storm surge

January 2008

Storm surges to threaten London and the South East?

Storm surge

Parts of south-eastern England narrowly avoided a potential catastrophe last November.

A storm surge – the worst since 1953 – raised sea levels by three metres. There was localised flooding in Norfolk and Suffolk and the Thames Flood Barrier was raised in case high tides came surging into central London.

With climate change forecast to bring higher sea-levels, experts are now warning that even more needs to be done to protect London in the future. New defences will most likely need to be built. Meanwhile, a new film – Flood – gives us a glimpse of what might happen if London is not given better protection.


This article supports GCE 2008 courses:

  • Edexcel 2008 AS topics Extreme weather (Unit 2) and World at risk (Unit 1)
  • OCR 2008 AS topic Managing physical environments
  • AQA 2008 AS topic River, floods and management and A2 topic Weather and climate and associated hazards

In the Members' Area:

  • South-east England survives major storm surge
  • Protecting London: is the Thames Flood Barrier fit for the job?
  • Practise AS questions

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