Implementation of the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009: report to the Scottish Parliament

Progress of work being carried out through the implementaion of the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009.

5. Selecting And Implementing Sustainable Actions

5.1 Background

The main output of the flood risk management planning process is a set of sustainable actions being taken to reduce overall flood risk across Scotland.

The flood risk management strategies and local flood risk management plans incorporate a wide spectrum of actions, ranging from national policies to flood protection schemes to awareness raising activities. Options are identified and considered within a structured appraisal process. This ensures that options are considered in a consistent way, with alternative options properly considered and investment decisions are justified. Sustainable solutions are likely to be a combination of actions.

In 2016 the Scottish Government published revised Appraisal Guidance. The document provides guidance for SEPA and the responsible authorities on the economic, social and environmental aspects of options appraisal for actions promoted under the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009. It identifies methods for identifying and assessing positive and negative impacts and recommends a decision framework, based on the principles of sustainable flood risk management and consistent with the HM Treasury Green Book and the Scottish Government guidance on appraisal and evaluation, part of the Scottish Public Finance Manual.

5.2 Appraisal and Prioritisation for Cycle Two

SEPA are currently progressing plans for the development of the 2021 FRM Strategies. The Scottish Government and local authorities are working with SEPA to develop an appraisal and prioritisation method that accommodates the opportunities, ambitions, and challenges presented by the second cycle. This work will continue throughout 2019.

5.3 Decision Making in a Changing Climate

The Scottish Government and SEPA have commissioned research through ClimateXChange to understand how climate projections can be better incorporated into economic appraisals for flood risk management measures in Scotland. This will help to achieve a managed adaptive approach in the actions taken to manage flood risk.

5.4 Funding

Since 2008, the Scottish Government has made available funding of £42 million per year (via the Capital settlement) to enable Local Authorities to deliver appropriate flood protection measures.

In 2016 agreement was reached between Scottish Ministers and COSLA on a new strategic funding plan for flood protection schemes. The agreement guarantees that the level of flooding capital grant within the local government settlement is set at a minimum of £42m per annum, for ten years. This gives local authorities the certainty they need to deliver the actions set out in their Local Flood Risk Management Plans to help protect individuals, business and communities from the danger of flooding.

The funding will help to deliver 40 new flood protection schemes and works.

It has been agreed that from 2016/17 onwards flooding capital grant should be allocated on the basis of a hybrid model whereby 80% of the grant is allocated to large scale projects and distributed according to the prioritisation of flooding schemes set out in the 14 Flood Risk Management Strategies published in December 2015.

20% is allocated to all 32 councils to contribute to the other elements contained in the Strategies.

Local authorities are also free to allocate additional resources to flooding from within the overall funding provided to them by the Scottish Government and from within their own resources


Email: Gordon Robertson

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