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Thread: Somerset flooding

  1. #151
    Senior Member Phil's Avatar
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by Mog View Post
    The thing is that nobody on the levels has technically built on a floodplain, something that people are forgetting. London is built on a floodplain. The Somerset levels are a drained coastal wetland that has been engineered to minimise flooding (providing the engineering works are kept good). This is the same as vast swathes of Holland and Northern Germany which only exist because of dykes and pumping stations and regular maintenance of the drainage infrastructure.

    Don't build on floodplains. Tell that to the people along the Thames Valley at the moment
    Don't build on a drained wetland. Fine. But at least give the generations of people who have made their livelihoods there, or have settled there to live, the chance to move elsewhere when you decide to no longer maintain the infrastructure so that the return to coastal wetland become inevitable.

    The vast majority of our towns & Cities are built on flood plains. Of course, they were only small villages to start with ! The River provided water to drink & wash (and also acted as an open sewer) man then harnessed the power of water and used the river to run mills etc.
    Trouble is....we just haven't stopped building !

    As for the levels not being a flood plain ? I understand the point you are trying to make...but your point is rather futile for those now severely affected !

    And if you look at the amount of recent development down River from the levels, around the Wicker Man, it is blatantly obvious that this is flood plain & has almost certainly played a part in making the flooding on the levels a lot worse !

    When we were fighting the council & the developers over this new 7,500 house town here we were continually told that they would be "replacing the area of lost flood plain somewhere else" ???
    When we looked at the plans a little more closely it was soon discovered that the sports pitches for the new secondary school were on an area that did flood now & again, & was up-stream of the new development & railway station. Since they have changed the Landscape & built 700+ of the houses...the area they intend to use for the sports pitches now floods regularly !!!!!!!!
    At times it really does make you want to scream. Some of these district Council planners & developers have not got a bloody clue !!

  2. #152
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    The biggest problem is that middle management is coming straight from university and have not got a clue whats happening at ground level, many of these people have their heads that far up their own arses they can't see where they are going.

  3. #153
    Senior Member Phil's Avatar
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by Skimmer View Post
    The biggest problem is that middle management is coming straight from university and have not got a clue whats happening at ground level, many of these people have their heads that far up their own arses they can't see where they are going.
    Wouldn't argue with that skimmer.

    We also have the issue of big business types being able to influence councilors & planning departments ! This is why we are seeing such massive over development in some area's & are still seeing this completely ignorant & stupid "policy" of building on flood plains !!

    Forget theses so called "record breaking rain fall records"...just for the moment. (In the southern half of the country it was wetter back in the 20's)

    1. We have built our towns and cities around Rivers & flood-plains !

    2. Over the last 50 years, they have decided to stop dredging & maintaining the drainage !

    3. Over the last 50 years we have continued to expand our towns & cities, over the last 20 to 30 years we have seen a huge increase in development !

    Now you do not need a masters degree in hydrology, or some two bit "environmental" qualification & title, to work out that this was going to cause big problems!

    We are now hearing, from these very well educated types, that we have to make "Hard choices" and the possibility that places like the Somerset levels & probably other great chunks of good productive farm land will have to be left in order to protect "our towns".
    Where the hell have all these bloody "experts" been while all of this has been going on ???

    Why the hell should we sacrifice good farm land, and therefore our own food security, and also a lot of the small villages & communities, just because people can not see past their own nose (our bank balance) !!!

    I really do hope that the NFU & CLA etc get behind this & give their full support to the communities that are at risk.
    And The National Trust can damn well get off the fence as well !

  4. #154
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentis...oil-protection

    this has today's date on it and already over 700 comments! Do these folks spend all their time online while commuting?

  5. #155
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by Joyce View Post
    http://www.theguardian.com/commentis...oil-protection

    this has today's date on it and already over 700 comments! Do these folks spend all their time online while commuting?
    Obviously does not know what a sub soiler is
    Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.

  6. #156
    Senior Member 4wd's Avatar
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Several points he makes are totally incorrect, showing again Monbiot is an idiot who know just enough to be dangerous.
    He's playing a populist tune for anti-farming greens who read that newspaper.
    Trouble is next thing the message is being used to influence policy.
    I don't think we need lose much sleep if they ban UK grown maize being used in bio-fuel (one of his claims..)
    But what will happen is more legislation and inspection around the already completely dotty soil protection review.

  7. #157
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    "Do these folks spend all their time online while commuting?"

    Y.

    And article was posted yesterday evening.

  8. #158
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    The Guardian article needs answering properly. Amount of maize and ploughing contributing to Somerset problems etc. We have to take this sort of stuff seriously.

  9. #159
    Senior Member Phil's Avatar
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by 4wd View Post
    Several points he makes are totally incorrect, showing again Monbiot is an idiot who know just enough to be dangerous.
    He's playing a populist tune for anti-farming greens who read that newspaper.
    Trouble is next thing the message is being used to influence policy.
    I don't think we need lose much sleep if they ban UK grown maize being used in bio-fuel (one of his claims..)
    But what will happen is more legislation and inspection around the already completely dotty soil protection review.
    He was on Panorama last night spouting his anti-farming propaganda !
    Most of what he said is his own skewed opinion that is not backed up with any data or hard facts !

    If he wants photo's of mud & silt going straight in to a main water course they he can come down here & take as many as he likes.....but this mud & silt is coming from a huge housing development NOT farm land !

    And what did the Environment Agency do when we alerted them to the direct pollution & run off that was coming from this site ? -




    Absolutely nothing !!! they even refused to take water samples !!!

  10. #160
    Senior Member 4wd's Avatar
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Hopefully the monbiot idiot will be ignored in favour of actually implementing more sensible suggestions from reports on the 2007 flood (from a Civil Engineer not a green idealist)
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-26176195

  11. #161
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  12. #162
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    And don't belive for one minute the EA is short on money it is wasted on engineers reports,method statements,risk assesments, crackpot H&S mearsures,needless cosh reports,wasting time on procurement, all jobs for the boys by the time it comes to pay for the digging there is no money left in the pot.
    For those who don't know river dedging's is now toxic waste even though it's in the watercourses.

  13. #163
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by Skimmer View Post
    And don't belive for one minute the EA is short on money it is wasted on engineers reports,method statements,risk assesments, crackpot H&S mearsures,needless cosh reports,wasting time on procurement, all jobs for the boys by the time it comes to pay for the digging there is no money left in the pot.
    For those who don't know river dedging's is now toxic waste even though it's in the watercourses.
    Oh yes, don't believe ANY government related body has been short of cash- most of them have been THROWN money in the last 15 years under Labour and simply did not know where to spend it next.

    The problems this country faces today in the public sector has nothing to do with money and everything to do with culture, attitude and the fact 90% of them are bloody inept.

  14. #164
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by Uwork4menow View Post
    Oh yes, don't believe ANY government related body has been short of cash- most of them have been THROWN money in the last 15 years under Labour and simply did not know where to spend it next.

    The problems this country faces today in the public sector has nothing to do with money and everything to do with culture, attitude and the fact 90% of them are bloody inept.
    And the sooner we get this message across to the general public the better,now's the time to keep banging the drum.
    Everyone needs to be writing to their mp's newspapers ect,taking pictures of silted and overgrown rivers it is a national problem now not just an agricultural one.

  15. #165
    Senior Member matthew's Avatar
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by Skimmer View Post
    And the sooner we get this message across to the general public the better,now's the time to keep banging the drum.
    Everyone needs to be writing to their mp's newspapers ect,taking pictures of silted and overgrown rivers it is a national problem now not just an agricultural one.
    One man's silted and overgrown river, is another's 'wetland habitat'.
    All designed and agreed years ago, to comply with various EU directives. "Just add water."

    Silt dredgings are toxic waste only if they are moved twice. The length of a shovel held by a person = 6 feet and that's OK, or a mechanical long arm around 30 feet and that's fine. But put it down and pick it up again, and it comes under the EU Waste directives.

    Not only have river banks quite deliberately been allowed to silt making the rivers narrower as well as more shallow, the EA have planted miscanthus and other reedy stuff on the 'new' banks to prevent erosion.

    Plans here:

    http://www.eureferendum.com/blogview.aspx?blogno=84722

    Meanwhile dear old Moonbat, in the Guardian is given full rein to blame ...... us.

    http://www.eureferendum.com/blogview.aspx?blogno=84723

  16. #166
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    There's some sober analysis of the larger picture here ( http://www.newscientist.com/article/...l#.UwTBls4RU_Y ).

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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Worrying bit about sea level rises. However we've been there before: anyone been to Harlech Castle, for example? The rear entrance is perched on a cliff high above the sea but that entrance used to be access to the castle by boat, when the castle was built..

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    Re: Somerset flooding

    I was wondering how much this drainage levy is on the Somerset levels and what it is supposed to be used for? or is it just trousered by the env. agency
    and how much in comes to annualy.

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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by NIAB TAG View Post
    Worrying bit about sea level rises. However we've been there before: anyone been to Harlech Castle, for example? The rear entrance is perched on a cliff high above the sea but that entrance used to be access to the castle by boat, when the castle was built..

    Damn, Ianto, they've noticed the plan! Wales is increasing in area, whilst England is being lost to the sea, it's the masterplan revealed. Un bobl, un wladwriaeth, un arweinydd.(Come along now, altogether: Cymru, Cymru, uber alles...)

  20. #170
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by NIAB TAG View Post
    Worrying bit about sea level rises. However we've been there before: anyone been to Harlech Castle, for example? The rear entrance is perched on a cliff high above the sea but that entrance used to be access to the castle by boat, when the castle was built..
    Yes, often laughed about that. Also laughed when a group [Countryfile maybe?] stood there going on about climate change and the risk of rising sea levels - the irony was just wonderful to behold......... don't know how they kept straight faces!

  21. #171
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    (In the southern half of the country it was wetter back in the 20's)
    i am not sure about that as according to local records, here in east dorset it is looking like breaking the record for winter rainfall.
    apart from that i quite agree with you.

  22. #172
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by NIAB TAG View Post
    Worrying bit about sea level rises. However we've been there before: anyone been to Harlech Castle, for example? The rear entrance is perched on a cliff high above the sea but that entrance used to be access to the castle by boat, when the castle was built..
    As I understand it, the country is effectively pivoting in the middle as it recovers from the compression of the ice sheet during the last ice age. This is why the remains of an ancient whale were found high and dry in a field near my cousin's house in Scotland, while the Solent in Southern England contains many flooded historical features which have been submerged in historical times (ie only in the last few thousand years). It is happening relatively quickly.

  23. #173
    Senior Member Phil's Avatar
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by NIAB TAG View Post
    Worrying bit about sea level rises. However we've been there before: anyone been to Harlech Castle, for example? The rear entrance is perched on a cliff high above the sea but that entrance used to be access to the castle by boat, when the castle was built..
    Yes, rather odd that these so called scientists & Environmentalists never seem to refer to these facts !!!

    It was probably 15 years or more ago now ?....but I still clearly remember some boffin from Plymouth University being interviewed by BBC spotlight & stating that Farmers in Southern England should "embrace global warming" as they would soon be able to take advantage of the hot dry summers & grow bananahs & other tropical fruits ???
    What happened a few years later ??? - 2009, 2010, 2011 & 2012 were the coldest & wettest summers for decades - we really did struggled to grow maize (sub-tropical crop) and in some area's the yields of wheat, Barley and Rape were adversely effected !
    Is it any wonder that people (that actually have any common sense) now take everything some of these "scientists" spout with a very hefty pinch of salt !

  24. #174
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Did anyone see Guy Smith's piece in the FW? Well written I thought as was the lady (name escapes me) on the preceding page.

  25. #175
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    "Returning parts of Somerset to the Middle Ages":

    Booker's column in tomorrow's Telegraph + a bit more:

    http://www.eureferendum.com/blogview.aspx?blogno=84737

  26. #176
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    Re: Somerset flooding

    Quote Originally Posted by essexpete View Post
    Did anyone see Guy Smith's piece in the FW? Well written I thought as was the lady (name escapes me) on the preceding page.
    Like many households, the Smith abode gets run on a gender divide of pink jobs and blue jobs.For example, Mrs Smith tends to do most of the cooking and Mr Smith is in charge of the drains. That’s where the trouble starts. Mrs Smith feels the drains aren’t cleaned regularly enough and Mr Smith feels if less “gubbins” (as he calls it) was tipped down the sink the drains would need less cleaning. This usually leads to a bit of a stand-off while fetid water hangs around in the kitchen sink until Mr Smith gets the drain rods out to clear the gubbins out of the system. But recently I’ve tried a new argument I learned from the Environment Agency. I explained to Mrs Smith that the build-up of fetid water in her sink wasn’t really due to the gubbins in the drains but rather it was due to her turning the taps on so often. I also suggested that rather than ask me to clean the drains out, it would be better to try to keep all the fetid water in pots and pans around the draining board. This led to aforesaid pots and pans being thrown at me while I was trying to read the paper.
    When it comes to draining excess water away from villages and farmland, I will confess I’m no engineer, but here’s the thing – nor are some of the people in the Environment Agency. Take Lord Smith of Finsbury, chairman of the Environment Agency. He studied English at University and did his PhD in the poetry of Coleridge and Wordsworth. Now call me old-fashioned, but when I’ve got a problem with a ditch, I tend to call in a bloke with a digger rather than ask someone to write a couple of stanzas in praise of the ditch.
    But obviously the chairman isn’t the be-and-end-all - the chief executive is equally important. To his credit, Paul Leinster is an environmental engineer, but the person he took over from, Barbara Young, was not. Barbara Young was CEO at the EA for the eight years, from 2000-2008, and before that she was CEO of the RSPB. The phrase “who put the fox in charge of the chicken coop” comes to mind, as does the observation “you can take the bird out of the RSPB, but you can’t take the RSPB out of the bird”.
    The fact the EA stopped routinely dredging rivers such as the Parrett and the Tone around the time of the millennium has to be noted. The other thing that should be noted is that both Lord Smith and Barbara Young had close connections with the Labour Party, which was in power at the time of their appointments.
    But enough of the past. To be fair to the RSPB, it is a much-improved organisation. It now acknowledges we must return to dredging rivers such as the Parrett and the Tone. It even sees the sense in having good sea walls for flood protection now that the sea has punched holes in the walls that protect various bird reserves on the East Anglian coast. This is quite a contrast to its old policy of deliberately punching holes in sea walls such as the one that used to protect Wallasea Island in Essex.
    If there was one thing I would like to see come out of the flooding crises of 2013-14, it would be a return to a proper regard for engineers and engineering. Let’s put the political rhubarb behind us and get ourselves properly defended from flooding.
    .
    Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.

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