Firms urged to weigh in with opinions about flood protection

flooding

People living and working on and around the Humber are being invited to complete a survey to help organisations working on a new tidal flood risk strategy understand local views and priorities.

The Humber 2100+ partnership – made up of 12 local authorities, the Environment Agency and the Humber LEP – is working to come up with a new approach to managing tidal flood risk around the estuary and on the tidal rivers upstream, such as the River Hull and the Holderness Drain.

They want to understand how people in the area feel about tidal flooding and how it can best be managed, and are also keen to understand what people value in their local area and would like to see protected or taken into account as part of the new strategy.

Tidal flood risk on and around the Humber is currently managed through an existing strategy, published in 2008, which will see £150m invested in new or improved flood management schemes by 2021. However, the time is right to review the approach to ensure that all communities around the estuary can continue to prosper in the face of increased tidal flood risk due to sea level rise and climate change.

The Humber 2100+ project team is currently undertaking technical work to look at what is possible in terms of practicality, value for money and environmental considerations. However, they also want to know what people living and working in the area would like to see. All of this information will be brought together next year to develop initial options, and then a public consultation will be held to allow people to comment on the emerging proposals.

Environment Agency Humber Strategy Manager Philip Winn said: “Tidal flooding can have an effect on businesses, agriculture, communities and the local environment, as we saw in December 2013, when 1,100 properties were flooded and there was huge damage around the estuary.

“It’s one the biggest risks faced by people living on the very flat and vulnerable land around the Humber, so we want to involve as many people as possible in shaping the new strategy so that it truly provides a solution for all.

“This public survey is the first stage in gathering input from others, and there will be more opportunities to comment as we develop our plans.”

Councillor Chris Matthews, East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s portfolio holder for strategic management, said: “It is important East Riding residents who live near the Humber Estuary take part in this survey as it will help to inform us how aware people are of the risks of tidal flooding, how prepared they are if flooding occurs, and therefore what more we need to do as a partnership.

“Although we are working on a number of tidal flood defence schemes and other measures which will reduce the risk of flooding, we can never prevent flooding altogether, so we need to make sure residents are as informed and prepared as possible.”