Wales & West Utilities - Mapping the Future of Flooding

Good for business
  • Wales & West Utilities’ world’s first climate change impact mapping is a unique product in an emerging market. This puts the firm at the forefront of environmental leadership.
  • Roll-out of the pilot study mapping across the entire Wales & West Utilities network offers savings by avoiding damage, efficiently monitoring assets and delivering lower-cost interventions.
The Dŵr Cymru Environmental Leadership Award, Shortlisted 2016

The Wales & West Utilities pilot project will model and map how flooding will look in the future. This will help protect properties and communities by outlining the growth of floodplains and increasing flood depth.

Wales & West Utilities logo

The pilot for Wales & West Utilities Mapping the Future of Flooding project is centred around Machynlleth in the Afon Dyfi, mid Wales. Flooding in the 2020s, 2050s and 2080s will be predicted using Met Office climate change projections. The mapping will show how severe future flooding might be and where will be most at risk.

These visions of future flooding help support organisations which deliver adaptations of properties and environments to help build resilience into the future.

The Climate Change Commission for Wales has recently stated that businesses and communities across Wales are already experiencing and dealing with the consequences of extreme weather events and the impacts of a changing climate.

Climate change is perhaps the greatest environmental challenge facing our planet and a combined approach to mitigation and adaptation is needed.

UK floods, which keep surpassing previous records, are highlighting the need for adaptation. A mapping tool, such as that developed for Wales & West Utilities’ pilot will enable adaptation needs and investment requirements to be identified on all levels.  

With more than 35,000km of mains, Wales & West Utilities transports gas to 2.5 million homes and businesses in Wales & the South West of England, across a geography covering 1/6 of the UK and so planning for addressing flooding is key factor in future business planning.

What Wales & West Utilities' Chief Executive said:

“Protecting the environment and promoting sustainability is a key focus for Wales & West Utilities. We are constantly challenging ourselves to provide better solutions through embracing new ideas and innovative thinking.

“We want to take a leading environmental role in Wales and beyond, and look for solutions to problems being experienced by utilities and wider sectors. Our pilot project to model and map the physical impacts of climate change in Machynlleth brings answers to questions raised during recent flood events.

“The future flood mapping output from our project will allow home and business owners, infrastructure operators as well as local and national government to adapt to a changing climate.” - Graham Edwards, Chief Executive, Wales & West Utilities

Good for the environment
  • The data from the project will help Wales & West Utilities design appropriate drainage systems and suitable long-term flood defences to protect properties.
  • The project reduces the reliance of local communities on fossil fuels by increasing the number of renewable gas connections into the company's network.