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NEW SIMULATOR TEACHES FLOOD MANAGEMENT

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A new device to raise the profile of the risks and effects of ...
A new device to raise the profile of the risks and effects of

flooding around the UK has been launched by the government's chief

scientific adviser David King.

FloodRanger is a flood simulator that puts the player in control of a

fictional area of the UK coast over a 100 year period.

The aim is to defend cities, towns and the countryside in a virtual

terrain whilst maintaining levels of housing and jobs for an

expanding population.

FloodRanger has been developed from the DTI's Foresight project on

flood and coastal defences. It will be a useful tool for

organisations such as local authorities, the Environment Agency,

other government departments and universities to help educate and

inform people involved with flood planning and management.

The initial software is generic but future versions can be tailored

to particular environments with the developers.

Sir David said: 'Flooding can have a devastating effect on people's

homes and businesses. There are around£200bn worth of assets and 1.7

million households in flood risk areas in England and Wales.

'Current measures reduce the risk considerably, but as there are

clear indications that flood risk will increase, long-term planning

is vital.

'FloodRanger is intended to raise awareness of flood and coastal

defence issues in a way that is both fun and thought-provoking. It is

an innovative new tool to be used as a learning process for anyone

involved with flood management.'

Players must take tough decisions and face the consequences. They

must decide where to build and what to defend, they must create jobs

and houses, and face the uncertainties of climate change.

The Environment Agency's regional climate change project manager Tim

Reeder said: 'FloodRanger brings home to a wider audience the

implications of making long-term decisions on flood risk management

given the uncertainties that climate change will bring. We will be

considering how we can use the approach that FloodRanger demonstrates

in our future work.'

Chris Walker from East Sussex CC said: 'Not only could FloodRanger

help those engaged on infrastructure planning and environmental

management to understand the complex implications of future climate

change on river catchments and coastal management, but could also

provide a useful learning facility in education.'

The Foresight flood and coastal defence team has worked with

Discovery Software Ltd and View the World Ltd to develop this version

of the FloodRanger software. Copies of the game are available from

Discovery Software Ltd, email: kpm@discoverysoftware.co.uk Tel: 01803

663975 Website: www.discoverysoftware.co.uk

Notes

1. Flooding and coastal erosion are a key future challenges for the

UK. The Foresight flood and coastal defence project was set up to

help identify how future science and technologies might help define

and meet these challenges.

2. FloodRanger is one of the outcomes of the Foresight flood and

coastal defence project.

3. The flood and coastal defence project is producing a long-term

(30-100 year) vision for the future of UK flood and coastal defence

which is robust and can be used as a basis to inform policy, and its

delivery. This vision will be challenging and independent.

4. The project reported its first findings in June 2003 and expects

to make its final report in April 2004. Further information about

this and other Foresight projects at www.foresight.gov.uk

5. Further information about the developers of FloodRanger can be

found here.

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