"By now we all know, or should know, that continuing to build on floodplains is not a very good idea. Unless we begin to design a new generation of buildings on stilts, or learn how to raise land up from the water as the Dutch do, or design new towns along the lines of Venice, then we should abandon all plans to build where waters are likely to rise.
Will we? Not a chance. In Britain floodplains are cheap land. We want lots of cheap new housing, ever more supermarkets, major roads, distribution depots and heavy traffic to serve the latest low-cost estates. You can see these homes currently marching their way along the flanks of Ely in Norfolk, capital of the water-sodden Fens, and, in particular, along the length of the Thames Gateway, the lands along the Essex and Kent banks of the Thames. We should be very wary indeed of building here."