Research suggests that planting trees can help to protect local homes and businesses from flooding

Following flooding in the UK over the past few years, the costs to businesses and local residents has been huge.

According to an article in The Telegraph “Insurers paid out £1.19 billion for flood and storm damage across the UK during 2012 – marking the highest annual figure in five years.” (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/insurance/9873588/Flooding-costs-insurers-1.2bn.html)

Estimates from the Environment Agency also suggest that “the annual cost to property alone is £1 billion with this number spiralling to £2.5 billion when taking into account disruption, damage to infrastructure and loss of business.”

The European Commission’s Science for Environment Policy states that “Trees form a valuable part of green infrastructure in cities by helping reduce surface water runoff, recent research finds. Together with grassy areas, significant reductions in surface water flows can be achieved by planting trees, thereby reducing the risk of floods.” (http://ec.europa.eu/environment/integration/research/newsalert/pdf/343na1.pdf)

Your business could help contribute to reducing the risk of surface water flooding to your own land and to that of nearby businesses and homes by adding more landscaped areas and planting trees which will provide more porous areas to absorb rainfall. If your business has lots of hard surfaces such as car parks, paved areas, access roads etc, planting trees into pits within these hard surfaces or along roadsides can help to intercept rain water which will therefore slow down the speed at which the water reaches the ground, drains and surrounding rivers and streams.

If you would like to talk to us about planting trees or landscaping areas around your business premises or home, please give Caroline a call on 0191 263 2752 or email caroline.hasson@buildingfutureseast.org

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