In November 2014, The Treasury announced that more than 1,400 flood defence projects are to receive funding to protect 300,000 homes from future flood damage, as part of the National Infrastructure Plan (NIP).
The £2.3bn investment in major defences, which is not new money, will help prevent £30bn flood damage in areas including the Thames and Humber Estuaries in the next six years.
Environment Secretary Liz Truss told the BBC the government had spent £3.2bn in total on flood defences, “more in real terms than over the previous parliament because we recognise flood defences are vitally important for homes, for prosperity”.
The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) welcomed the funding, but said maintenance of existing defences was being neglected. This means the remainder will degrade and need replacing at extra expense.
Among the £2.3bn investment is:
- £196m for Thames Estuary projects which ministers say will reduce the risk to more than 8,000 properties
- £80m for Humber Estuary improvements, including sea defences between Immingham to Freshney and flood frontage in Hull
- £42m for a flood alleviation scheme in Oxford
- Funding for schemes in Boston, Lincolnshire (£73m), Rossall, Lancashire (£47m), and the Tonbridge area (£17m)
- £15.5m for flood defences in Somerset benefitting 7,000 properties – including £4.2m on the Somerset Levels and Moors. This is part of at least £35m committed to Somerset from this year until 2021.
A Treasury spokesman said it was spending £171m on maintenance this year and had restored the Environment Agency budget to the same in cash terms as in 2010-11 (behind inflation).
It was working with the Environment Agency to improve efficiency, the spokesman added.
Danny Alexander, chief secretary to the Treasury, said: “We all saw the destruction and heartache caused by flooding last year and that is why this investment is vital to build Britain’s defences for the future.
“The projects we are announcing today will protect some of the country’s most at-risk locations ensuring that we will be as prepared as possible for future severe weather.”
Guy Shrubsole, of Friends of the Earth, said the money set aside for flood defences was “certainly not enough to keep pace with climate change in the future”. He added: “We need to be doing far more to protect households and to prevent climate change inthe first place.”
What to do if you experience flood damage
They will be able to return the property to its pre-incident condition as quickly as possible, minimising secondary damage, efficiently and effectively, with the minimum of disruption.
Flood clean up and flood damage restoration is a process that can have serious consequences for the structure and integrity of your property, if the operation is not handled by experts in flood damage management.