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Thames Flood Barrier

Volume 489: debated on Tuesday 17 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the anticipated effective life expectancy of the Thames barrier is; and if he will commission plans to upgrade or replace the existing Thames barrier. (263129)

The Environment Agency's Thames Estuary 2100 project estimates that under current guidance for sea level rise (DEFRA 2006), the Thames barrier will drop below the 1 in 1,000 standard of protection around 2070.

The Thames Estuary 2100 project will release its draft plan for consultation on March 31. The plan will make recommendations on what actions will be required to manage future tidal flood risk within the estuary, and when these will be required, through to the end of the century. The plan will include recommendations on the future upgrading or replacement of the Thames barrier after 2070.