The Environment Agency (EA) take flood risk incredibly seriously and have a long-term plan to upgrade and invest in flood defences across England to benefit local communities. When building flood defences there is a legal requirement that they cannot increase the flood risk of communities either upstream or downstream.
Creating climate resilient places lies at the heart of the EA’s National Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Strategy for England (FCERM Strategy) and Roadmap to 2026. The EA’s role in flood and coastal erosion risk management is outlined here. The EA is also a Category 1 responder set out by The Civil Contingency Act (2004).
The EA are in the third year of the current 6-year £5.2billion Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management (FCERM) investment programme. The funding can be spent on projects that better protect properties in England as well as the development of future projects.
At the end of March 2023, the EA estimated that approximately £1.5 billion of this funding has been invested with over 200 flood risk schemes completed.
Around 60,000 properties have benefited from better protection since the start of the current 6-year programme (between April 2021 to March 2023). This takes the total number of properties protected to 374,000 since 2015.
During Storms Babet and Ciarán around 2,400 properties sadly flooded but defences protected a further 110,000.