Wa­ter, wa­ter every­where

Canal Boat - - Letters - FRANK SAN­DER­SON, via email

WE ARE CON­STANTLY be­ing warned that global warm­ing will re­sult in ex­treme weather and floods and, if that is cor­rect, we need to plan for it – which in­cludes dredg­ing.

A few years ago, se­ri­ous flood­ing took place in Cum­bria and flood de­fences were built based on a 100-year storm pre­dic­tion. But if global warm­ing ac­cel­er­ates this, that pre­dic­tion would be out of date. And so, six years later, the De­cem­ber 2015 floods proved the point.

Be­cause the Pen­nines are a vast wa­ter­shed, all western rivers have to pass un­der the Lan­caster Canal in the many aque­ducts. Wa­ter en­gi­neers of the Lan­caster Canal have been work­ing against the clock, tak­ing wa­ter from up­stream and pass­ing it down the canal in an ef­fort to help the flood sit­u­a­tion up­stream. Con­se­quently, if the canal was still a wa­ter con­duit from Ken­dal, this would have helped the flood­ing by a sig­nif­i­cant mar­gin.

It is im­per­a­tive that we re­build our canals. The gov­ern­ment states that, for ev­ery £1 spent, it expects £ 8 back in en­vi­ron­men­tal and so­cial gain. Some £30-mil­lion was spent on the Ken­net & Avon and it now gen­er­ates al­most £100-mil­lion per year, and is a con­stant de­light to ev­ery­one. Plus, it can be used in any emer­gency.

It only takes com­mon sense to see the ad­van­tages, so why are we wait­ing?

The Lune, the big­gest aqueduct on the Lan­caster

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