Planning reforms could increase development in flood risk areas and make properties uninsurable, says ABI

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has warned that the draft National Planning Policy Framework could lead to a ‘rise in inappropriate developments’ in flood risk areas according to recent press reports.

Writing in an article in the Daily Telegraph on 20 September, ABI Director General Otto Thorensen warned that

“It is essential that the plans to give local communities power to decide what is built where do not lead to a rise in inappropriate developments in flood risk areas, leading to people facing a struggle to get flood insurance. The result would not be stimulation of the economy but misery for people when their homes are flooded.”

He adds:

“We are concerned that increased decision-making by local planning authorities, without proper strategic oversight, will not apply sufficiently robust scrutiny in flood risk areas. Building developments in high flood risk areas will make flood insurance harder to access and, if available, more expensive, possibly prohibitively so.

“A property that cannot get insurance is likely to be uninhabitable and unsellable. This will put further pressure on Britain’s already high demand for housing, and hit the recovery of the house-building sector.

The ABI has joined groups campaigning for a rethink in the National Planning Policy Framework.

Read relevant articles:

This is Money

Otto Thoresen, Director General of the Association of British Insurers, writes in the Daily Telegraph

Daily Telegraph Report,

Andrew Lainton blog commentary


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