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You are here News Environment Flooded British villages ignite climate debate

Flooded British villages ignite climate debate

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flooded southern EnglandAs children climb into boats to get to school and scores of hoses pump floodwaters from fields day and night, one corner of southwest England is trying to reclaim its land. Other Britons watch and wonder: How much can you fight the sea?

Here on the Somerset Levels - a marshy, low-lying region dotted with farmland and villages and crisscrossed by rivers - thousands of acres have been under water for weeks.

Some villages have been cut off for a month, leaving residents who have been forced to make long detours or take boats to school, work or grocery shops frustrated and angry. Some blame government budget cuts and inept environmental bureaucracy. Others point to climate change. Some wonder if flood defenses for major cities like nearby Bristol or London will take precedence over protecting their rural hamlets.

"I'm used to seeing floods on the Levels, but this is just something else," said 28-year-old Kris Davies, who was dragging sodden carpet from his cottage in the village of Thorney. He, his wife and two daughters have just returned after a month staying with family in a nearby town.

He said when the area flooded less severely last winter "we were told it was a one-in-100-year occurrence."

TVNL Comment:  Keep debating facts, folks.  That'll help a great deal as the planet reaches a point of no return.

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