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London Rivers Week: Climate Resilience of Waterways Panel

27th October 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Thames Water continues to contribute to the ever-increasing public agenda that seeks to improve waterways, especially in the Capital.

London Rivers Week for 2021 has three defined purposes, one of which is to help waterways become more climate resilient.

The UN Climate Change Conference UK 2021 will be held in Glasgow one week after London Rivers week. Key themes of COP26 are “adaptation” and “collaboration” and we are keen to facilitate a public discussion on the resilience of London Waterways and how industry, public sector and communities and collaboratively work to adapt them to be a more resilient.

This event will be hosted by Richard Aylard (Sustainability Director of Thames Water) and has three expert panellists. Each panellist will present on their own topic, followed by a Q&A.

Professor Adrian Butler (Professor of Subsurface Hydrology at Imperial College)

– Introduction topic: – The race is on! Can we make our waterways climate resilient in time?

Will we be able to bring the government, Environment Agency, industry and local citizens together to collectively meet the challenge of extreme rainfall events due to climate change, particularly in urban centres.

Fiona Barbour (Global Practice Leader for Water Resources and Flooding at Mott MacDonald)

– To build or not to build on flood plains?

Unlocking flood-prone land for regeneration will help strengthen the resilience of communities vulnerable to climate change

David Balmforth (Independent consultant and Government Advisor)

– Introduction topic: Climate Change and Urban Communities: Challenges and Opportunities.

There are particular challenges that urban communities face, especially in the South East of England, as a result of climate change and urban development. This presentation will demonstrate why a new paradigm is needed for draining our urban areas and what that might look like.

To book follow this link.

Adrian Butler Biography: Adrian Butler is Professor of Subsurface Hydrology in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Imperial College London. He teaches and researches on how water moves through and under the earth’s surface and how we can measure, model and manage its behaviour. He is the Director of a Hydrology MSc, which is training students to help solve these challenges, and he is leading a major project on integrated water management in London, which includes helping community groups and local residents to be a part of this.

Fiona Barbour Biography: Fiona is a Chartered Civil Engineer with twenty years of experience and specialises in Integrated Urban Drainage modelling, flood schemes, SWMP and SuDS. She is currently technical lead for FCDO funded Future Cities programmes in Vietnam and Thailand looking at drainage data management, flood modelling and flood warning schemes. Fiona leads Mott MacDonald’s practice of water resources and flooding technical experts made up of 1400 people globally. Drawing on experience from across the globe to offer innovation and efficiencies to our clients. She is chair of Institution of Civil Engineer’s Flooding Community Advisory Board and a committee member of CIWEM’s Urban Drainage Group (formally WaPUG).

David Balmforth Biography: David Balmforth is an independent consultant specialising in flood risk management and urban pollution control. He is a Past President of the Institution of Civil Engineers and until 2020 worked as an Executive Technical Director with the international engineering consultancy Stantec. His more recent work has ranged from the delivery of £multi-million engineering programmes in the water industry, to flood advisory work for municipalities in the UK and overseas, with a particular focus on climate change adaptation. He has worked on the alleviation of flooding and water pollution in London, Auckland and Singapore, and on low carbon solutions to water pollution in the South of England. David is a member of the UK Government’s Roundtable on Property Flood Resilience. In 2016 he was a Specialist Advisor to the UK Government Select Committee Inquiry into the Future of Flood Prevention and a member of the Scientific Advisory Group to the National Flood Resilience Review, and he served as a member of the UK Government Review (Pitt Review) of the 2007 Summer Floods. David is a Visiting Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Imperial College London and is currently a member of the UK’s National Infrastructure Commission’s expert advisory panel on climate resilience and a member of the Singapore Government’s Coastal Protection Expert Panel on climate change adaptation.

London Rivers Week is a partnership campaign run through London Rivers Restoration Group, a sub-group of the Catchment Partnerships in London. It is sponsored by Thames Water.



27th October 2021
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Event Category:


Thames Water