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EU funding secured for partnership initiative to increase flood resilience

EU funding secured for partnership initiative to increase flood resilience

The Rivers Trust, in partnership with the National Flood Forum, are leading a new 3 year project to help increase the resilience of communities and infrastructure against flood risk.

On 29th September 2016, the EU Interreg North Sea Region programme gave the green light for the ‘Flood Resilient Areas by Multi-layEr Safety approach’ (FRAMES) – an €8 million project which will be 50% co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund. Working at EU level, The Rivers Trust will join organisations from Belgium, Denmark, Germany and The Netherlands to reduce the consequences of flooding and help prepare communities for climate change, by increasing the resilience of infrastructure and advise policy recommendations to reduce recovery times after a flood.

As global warming takes shape, Europe could see increased rainfall and higher water levels in our local rivers. Working at EU level is essential to the success of the project, with the consequences of climate change and floods exceeding regional and national borders. If flood defences are breached, this could lead to increased risks to life, property and infrastructure.

FRAMES is made up of 13 pilot projects which will directly involve inhabitants, authorities and other stakeholders, and advise on local, regional, national and international policies for authorities and organisations in the North Sea Region.

Local rivers trusts working on the project will be: Tees Rivers Trust, Trent Rivers Trust and South East Rivers Trust, who will be working directly with the National Flood Forum, to increase catchment resilience to flooding through natural flood risk management and community resilience measures. This integrated approach to non-traditional flood risk management will improve our knowledge of the role of civil society in flood risk management and improve our understanding of their effectiveness.

Alistair Maltby, Operations Director for The Rivers Trust said:

“As our risk from flooding increases due to climate change, we need to take a much more diverse and integrated approach to flood risk management than ever before. This will include making our landscape more suitable for high levels of water, and helping communities to protect their own property.

“Civil society, such as rivers trusts and local flood action groups, will need to play a more formal role in implementing these non-traditional measures, and this project will give The Rivers Trust and National Flood Forum the experience to support government in these new approaches”.

Paul Cobbing, Chief Executive of the National Flood Forum said:

“This country has seen major flood events almost every year since 2000.  No longer can these floods be described as unprecedented.  The reality of climate change, a growing population and increased demand for housing means that more communities are going to be at risk of flooding in the future.  But that’s not to say we can’t take action now to help people understand and reduce their flood risk.  There’s a need for a society-wide approach to flood risk management and we know that community involvement is very often the key to success.”

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