Climate adaptation must be a policy priority across government


Responding to the publication of the Environment Agency’s third adaptation report, Nick Molho, Executive Director at the Aldersgate Group, said: “Building on the recent climate risk assessment from the Committee on Climate Change, today’s report from the Environment Agency makes it clear that England is not yet prepared to deal with the impacts of climate change that we are already locked into. Efforts to adapt to climate change and cut emissions must now both be pursued with the same degree of ambition and should be hardwired across the policy making of all government departments from Treasury and housing through to transport, planning and industrial strategy. Given the immense task ahead, regulators such as the Environment Agency should be sufficiently well resourced and empowered to ensure they can carry out their critical environmental protection functions effectively.”

Nick Molho added:
 “A step change and a systemic approach is needed to better protect our homes, businesses and transport links, with responsibilities clearly divided between governments, regulators, businesses and homeowners. In the near term, the Government should recognise the role that early and ambitious action to restore England’s natural environment can play in helping us adapt cost-effectively to extreme weather events such as flooding and heat waves. It should use the return of the Environment Bill in the House of Commons next week to set an ambitious target setting process to significantly improve the state of our woodlands, peatlands, soils and other critical parts of the natural environment.”