COP26: Jurassic Coast cliffs collapse into sea as coastal homes are claimed by erosion and flooding


Video report by Richard Slee of ITV News Meridian


The rise in Earth’s temperature has led to extreme weather conditions in the South East, from cliff falls in Dover to flooding in Oxfordshire and record summer temperatures.

Nowhere offers a more obvious example of climate change in action than along the Jurassic Coast of Dorset, where this year there has been the biggest rockfall in over 60 years.

All along the southern coast there are places where the cliffs collapse as they are battered by waves in stormy weather.

But many tourists still put themselves in danger by walking near the edge of the cliff at a place like Beachy Head in East Sussex.

Experts fear warnings about climate change still go unheeded.

Experts say their climate change warnings are still not reaching some, like those tourists to Beachy Head

At the Southampton Oceanographic Center, research shows climate change is accelerating and there are clear examples in the South East, including rapid warming of the sea around our coastline.

Dr Simon Boxall, National Center for Oceanography, University of Southampton, said: “This increase in ocean temperatures means we are bringing more energy into the atmosphere and it means we have more storms, we’re warming up the whole system.

“For storms to happen, for these winds and things, we need warm seas and that’s why we’re seeing such a change in our storm patterns.”



Coastal erosion is also impacting the lives of an increasing number of people, such as the Isle of Sheppey where the edge of the creeping cliff calls for more homes every year.

Another example is where a the old lighthouse must have been pulled back from the edge of the cliff at Beachy Head.

However, not everyone can afford such drastic action, like the people whose homes were damaged in Selsey 10 years ago.

Houses are claimed by the sea on the Isle of Sheppey. Credit: AP Images

The COP26 climate conference – what you need to know

What is COP26? When and where will he be?

Each year, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) meets at what is known as the Conference of the Parties (abbreviated COP) to discuss global progress on climate change and how to make it happen. ‘deal.

COP26 is the 26th summit of the United Nations Conference of the Parties on climate change to be held in Glasgow from October 31 to November 12.

The leaders of the 197 countries that have signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – a treaty that entered into force in 1994 – are invited to the summit.

Here are some of the world leaders who will be attending COP26:

  • US President Joe Biden, climate envoy John Kerry, climate adviser and former Environmental Protection Agency administrator Gina McCarthy, and 10 other US cabinet officials.

  • Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. In the days leading up to COP26, Mr Morrison pledged Australia to achieve a net zero carbon goal by 2050.

Prince Charles, Prince William, Duchess of Cornwall and Duchess of Cambridge are also in attendance. The Queen has withdrawn from the visit after being advised by her doctors to rest – she will address the conference virtually instead.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro are among the leaders who have decided not to visit Glasgow.

Back to the top

What does he hope to achieve?

1. Achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and limit global warming to 1.5 ° C above pre-industrial levels– Countries are encouraged to set ambitious emissions targets for 2030. They are also encouraged to accelerate the phase-out of coal, fight deforestation, accelerate the switch to electric vehicles and encourage investment in renewable energies.

2. Protect natural habitats and communities from climate change disasters

3. Finances for a greener future In 2009, developed countries were asked to keep their pledges to contribute at least $ 100 billion (£ 72.5 billion) per year by 2020 to protect the planet. In 2015, it was agreed that the target would be extended until 2025.

However, a new analysis shows that the target is unlikely to have been reached last year and is set to fail in 2021 and 2022.

4. Get all countries and organizations to work together to fight the climate crisis

Back to the top

A recent UN report indicates that 5 million homes in the UK are now at risk from coastal erosion or flooding.

However, it’s not just coastal homes that are at risk, the Thames Valley has been hit hard by flooding in recent years.

The Environment Agency said it was increasingly looking for other ways to protect areas at risk of flooding.

Flooding has become increasingly frequent in the Thames Valley, such as in Wallingford in February this year Credit: ITV News Meridian

Nick Gray, Environmental Agency Coastal and Flood Risk Manager, said: “When we build flood defenses we have traditionally used steel and concrete and that always plays a role. important in the way we handle this.

“But we know we have to work with nature rather than fight it if we are to remain resilient to climate change.”

Record-breaking summer temperatures have seen tourists flock to beaches like Bournemouth Credit: ITV News Meridian

Warmer summers could be good for the tourism industry, but many other organizations are now realizing that there is a cost to dealing with the effects of global warming.

For example, in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, the council has spent over £ 7million to replenish beaches to protect the coastline.

An example says of 26 positive steps it did this year to help combat the effects of climate change.


About Coy Lewallen

Check Also

Harrogate Business Awards finalists revealed

The winners will be revealed at a black-tie awards ceremony at the Pavilions in Harrogate …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.