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Insurance fears for flood homes
RESEARCHERS have cast doubt over an agreement which protects homes in high-risk flooding areas from paying sky-high insurance premiums.
Flood Re, which came in to force in June, capped insurance premiums for more than 2,000 houses in York, 750 in Thirsk and Malton and hundreds more in Selby and East Yorkshire so they were not left fighting to gain insurance.
The properties were deemed to be in areas of high-risk flooding.
However new research is claiming that the insurance scheme, between the Government and the Association of British Insurers (ABI), has drastically underestimated the number of homes in the region currently under threat from flooding.
The report, from the London School of Economics, claims the scheme has not taken the effects of climate change in to account.
In the report, Dr Swenja Surminski said: “Flood risk is expected to increase due to climate change and continued development of floodplains for residential and commercial property, which increases the exposure of homes and businesses.
“The design of the Flood Re scheme has not taken into account adequately, if at all, how flood risk is being affected by climate change. PFor this reason, it is likely to be put under increasing pressure and may prove to be unsustainable because the number of properties in future that will be at moderate and high probability of flooding has been significantly underestimated.”
The number of properties currently at risk of flooding in the UK could increase up to 800,000 in the 2020s according to last year’s UK Climate Change Risk Assessment.
Thousands of high-risk homes are currently protected by the agreement, which replaced the Statement of Principles 2000 and is expected to last until 2035.
Researchers are now claiming that Flood Re is not prepared to deal with the increase of homes which could come under threat of flooding in the coming years because of climate change.
The report said: “The Flood Re scheme also does not offer integrated mechanisms for flood insurance to play its part in climate change adaptation. This means that it is unlikely to provide a long-term solution to the growing problem of uninsurable properties.”
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