Government outlines £2.15 billion flood defence budget
by Gill Montia
The Department of the Environment has outlined its spending plans on UK flood defences.
Over the next three years, £2.15 billion of Government money has been allocated to schemes aimed at the prevention of flood and costal erosion.
Of this money, £34.5 million will be spent on implementing the recommendations of Sir Michael Pitt’s report on the floods of last summer.
The Environment Agency will receive £1.8 billion of the overall budget, which it will allocate across the UK’s Operating Authorities. These comprise local authorities, Internal Drainage Boards and the Agency itself.
The Agency will also be responsible for monitoring programmes of work against targets that aim to ensure more households and important wildlife sites are protected from the risks of flooding.
Over the three year period, the Environment Agency will use £788 million of the £1.8 billion to fund its flood risk management service, which carries out the routine maintenance of flood defences and provides the UK’s flood warning service.
The insurance industry has agreed to continue to insure properties at risk of flooding in return for Government commitment to increase spending on flood defences.
The new budget will raise spending from £600 million to £650 million in 2008-09; £700m in 2009-10 and £800 million in 2010-11.