Flood Control

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered at on 4 January 2024.

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Photo of Baroness Ritchie of Downpatrick Baroness Ritchie of Downpatrick Non-affiliated

To ask His Majesty's Government what consideration they have given to collecting data on communities at risk of flooding with a view to designing a purposeful early warning system.

Photo of Lord Douglas-Miller Lord Douglas-Miller The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The Environment Agency provides the Check for flooding service on gov.uk giving information on flood alerts and warnings as well as a 5-day forecast. The Environment Agency uses its flood warning system on gov.uk to directly alert those who have signed up to receive flood warnings when flooding is expected in their area. There are currently around 1.6 million people signed up to receive these warnings.

In March 2023 the Government launched Emergency Alerts on gov.uk. The technology allows emergency messages to be broadcast to a defined area. This means any compatible device in or entering that area immediately receives the emergency message. Emergency Alerts are to be used in the most severe emergency situations where there is significant risk to life.

The Environment Agency is continuously improving its flood risk data. It is currently developing a new National Flood Risk Assessment (NaFRA2) that will provide a single picture of current and future flood risk from rivers, the sea and surface water, using both existing detailed local information and improved national data.

The new risk assessment will be available as open data and will provide risk management authorities, infrastructure providers, insurers, and members of the public with more accessible, richer, and trusted flood risk data and information (such as flood depth and duration of flooding).

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