Stuart has today welcomed the news that homes and businesses across the country will be better protected and more resilient in future after the Government revealed its long-term plan to tackle the risks of flooding and coastal erosion.
The measures set out in the new plan are the most comprehensive in a decade, including investment of £5.2 billion to create around 2,000 new flood and coastal defences to better protect 336,000 properties in England by 2027, alongside support to help households and businesses get back on their feet more quickly after flooding.
The plans also include £200m for innovative projects such as sustainable drainage systems and nature-based solutions. like temporary or permanent water storage areas which also boost wildlife. These will support 25 areas at risk of flooding to test and demonstrate innovative actions to adapt to a changing climate and improve their resilience.
In addition, up to £170m will be spent to accelerate work on shovel-ready flood defence schemes that will begin construction in 2020 or 2021. 22 areas across the country will benefit from this immediate boost to jobs supporting the local economy as communities recover from the impact of COVID-19.
The Government’s ambitious long-term plan sets out five key commitments – supported by over 40 clear actions - which will accelerate progress to better protect and better prepare the country for the coming years:
- Upgrading and expanding flood defences and infrastructure across the country;
- Managing the flow of water to both reduce flood risk and manage drought;
- Harnessing the power of nature to not only reduce flood risk, but deliver benefits for the environment, nature, and communities;
- Better preparing communities for when flooding and erosion does occur; and
- Ensuring every area of England has a comprehensive local plan for dealing with flooding and coastal erosion.
The plan will see the delivery of flood and coastal defences to prevent £32bn in economic damage, the creation of areas to store water during flooding and greater use of nature based solutions to reduce flood risk.
The plan also sets out proposed changes to the joint government and insurance industry Flood Re scheme. This will allow claims to include an additional amount so that flood resilience measures are included in repairs and allow households that have property flood resilience measures in place to benefit from lower premiums.
Stuart said: “Having faced some very difficult floods in the constituency and the wider Leeds area over the years, I am delighted by these steps being taken to address the issues caused and provide suitable funding.
I am also very pleased to learn that in Leeds, the Government will provide up to £21m for the Leeds Phase 2 Flood Alleviation Scheme which will protect more than 370 businesses and 3.300 jobs. The Natural Flood Management Scheme has also been awarded an additional £1,320,000 to help reduce and control the flow of rainwater into the River Aire catchment.
I am sure this will come as very welcome news to my constituents, and I will continue to engage with Ministers as this scheme is being delivered”