Ministers failing on flood risk, MPs say

 

The Government’s ‘reactive’ approach to flood defences is failing to protect communities at risk of flooding, MPs have said.

A new report from the cross-party Environmental Audit Committee has found a lack of effective long-term strategic planning about how to manage flood risk and that ‘despite efforts to improve, the Government appears to be reactive rather than proactive’.

”Local
Ministers  must 'maintain defences, as well as building new ones'

Committee chair Mary Creagh said: ‘We know that flooding is projected to get worse and occur more frequently because of climate change, so it just isn’t good enough for Government to react to flooding events as they occur. Communities at risk deserve certainty from Government.’

In their report, MPs noted the Government’s commitment to spend £2.3bn on flood defences but said they were ‘surprised to hear that the additional £700m of funding, announced in this year’s Budget, was based on a “political calculation” and may not be allocated using the same methods as the £2.3bn'.

MPs said this ‘could lead to inefficiencies in flood investment, poor decision making and potentially geographically unfair outcomes’.

The Committee also found that the condition of critical flood defences was in decline. MPs pointed out that the independent Worsfold review highlighted that cuts in maintenance spending saw a fall in the number of defences meeting the Environment Agency's required condition.

Ms Creagh said: ‘The Government needs to put money into the upkeep of existing flood defences as well as investing in new defences. Failure to do so can have terrible consequences for residents and businesses when defences fail.’

MPs said they were ‘concerned’ that the Government only released the Worsfold review when they requested it and that its approach to the publication and tracking of reviews demonstrated ‘a lack of transparency ‘.

They also expressed concern ‘that the Government does not know how prepared local authorities are for mitigating future flood events or whether their flood plans (if they have them) are fit for purpose’.

A spokesperson for environment department Defra said its six-year capital investment programme for flood defences would bring an end to year-on-year fluctuations in spending.

Its National Flood Resilience Review will be published shortly, followed by its 25-year environment plan later this year, 'setting out a new approach to managing our rivers across whole catchments, keeping homes, businesses and infrastructure safer from flooding'.

Jon Robinson, AECOM’s director – Waters, said the Government’s six-year investment programme should help address the stop-start approach to funding.

He added: ‘But it is important the programme is not back-end loaded with the bulk of construction occurring in years five and six. Design, maintenance and construction must be a continuous process in order to achieve the required outcomes.’

 

Also see

Register now for full access


Register just once to get unrestricted, real-time coverage of the issues and challenges facing UK transport and highways engineers.

Full website content includes the latest news, exclusive commentary from leading industry figures and detailed topical analysis of the highways, transportation, environment and place-shaping sectors. Use the link below to register your details for full, free access.

Already a registered? Login

 
comments powered by Disqus
 
 
highways jobs

Technical Support Officer

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£21.591 - £25.809
Using your administrative and communication skills to the full, you’ll provide invaluable support across our busy Directorate.  Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Assistant Tree Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£25,880 - £27,904
Looking for an assistant tree officer to join a busy Tree Section working with the most up to date arboriculture equipment’s and IT resources.   Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Contract Monitoring Officer (Streets and Grounds)

Wiltshire Council
£24,313 - £26,317 per annum
This is an interesting and varied role involving inspecting and monitoring the condition of the highway Wiltshire
Recuriter: Wiltshire Council

Green Space Partnership Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£30,066 - £34,538
You will have excellent written and presentation skills including experience of preparation of reports, briefings, minutes of meetings and... Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Sustainability Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£33,122 - £38,423
Looking for two Sustainability Officers to work across the Sustainability, Air Quality and Energy team to create, manage and... Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Parking Projects Manager

Brent Council
£45,585 - £48,482 p.a. inc.
As Parking Projects Manager, you will be responsible for leading the delivery, to time and budget, of key parking projects... Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Parking Operations Officer

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£19,554 - £21,166
Are you a hard-working individual, who enjoys working outdoors in all weather conditions? Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Team Leader (Local Plan)

City of Bradford MDC
£40,760 - £43,662 pa
The post requires a degree and eligible to be a corporate member of Royal Town Planning Institute and NVQ Level 5 in Management or... Bradford, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of Bradford MDC

Team Leader (Infrastructure & Local Plan Implementation)

City of Bradford MDC
£42,683 pa - £45,591 pa
The Post provides an exciting opportunity to manage a multidisciplinary team of professionals leading on Transport planning and Local Plan Bradford, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of Bradford MDC

Environmental Health Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£32,473 - £42,490
Seeking Environmental Health Officers to contribute towards delivering the project objectives of addressing rogue landlords and... Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Neighbourhood Highway Engineer

Devon County Council
£36,876 to £40,760 per annum
Seeking an experienced highway engineer with extensive knowledge of highway maintenance and traffic management to... Devon
Recuriter: Devon County Council

Road Safety and Sustainable Transport Assistant

Telford & Wrekin Council
SCP 13-17 - £11.41 - £12.35
Exciting opportunity to join Telford & Wrekin Council’s Highways, Transport & Engineering, Road Safety & Sustainable Transport Team. Telford, Shropshire
Recuriter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Project Assistant

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£26,999 - £29,636
Looking for an additional team member to support the Senior Environmental Health Officers in undertaking complex Air Quality Improvement Projects... Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Principal Road Safety Officer

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£42684 - £45585 per annum
We are looking a fantastic new road safety expert to lead our high performing and innovative Road Safety Team.The Royal Borough of Greenwich is commit England, London, Woolwich
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Principal Development Co-ordinator

Gloucestershire County Council
£33,799.00 - £38,813.00 plus 12% supplement*
Looking for those who will quickly understand the Gloucestershire context and can display their expertise and... Gloucestershire
Recuriter: Gloucestershire County Council

Team Leaders

Gloucestershire County Council
£43,662.00 - £45,591.00 plus 12% supplement*
Looking for those who will quickly understand the Gloucestershire context and can display their expertise and solid professional experience in... Gloucestershire
Recuriter: Gloucestershire County Council

Highways Project Manager  

Gloucestershire County Council
£43,662.00 - £45,591.00 plus 12% supplement*
Looking for those who will quickly understand the Gloucestershire context and can display their expertise and... Gloucestershire
Recuriter: Gloucestershire County Council

HDM - Team Manager

Gloucestershire County Council
£49,472.00 - £52,327.00 plus 12% supplement*
Looking for those who will quickly understand the Gloucestershire context and can display their expertise and... Gloucestershire
Recuriter: Gloucestershire County Council

Ugobus Driver (multiple positions)

Essex County Council
Up to £18938 per annum
Please note that we have permanent, fixed term and relief contract opportunities on a part time, job share and flexible working basis. The salary is u England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Inspector (Street Works)

Bedford Borough Council
£27,905 - £30,507 per annum
You will inspect the highways at agreed frequencies in order to maintain the highway in a safe and usable condition. Bedford, Bedfordshire
Recuriter: Bedford Borough Council