Friday, 4 July 2008

CLA supports Pitt Review

The CLA today (25 June 2008) gave its support to many of the measures recommended in the Pitt Review into last summer's devastating floods.

The rural economy experts also welcomed Environment Minister Phil Woolas' statement that the Government was ready to back up the proposals by "providing authorities with the powers to ensure that organisations and landowners responsible fulfil their obligations, for example by maintaining drains".

CLA President Henry Aubrey-Fletcher said: "The CLA supports this approach and it serves as a reminder to the Environment Agency and other relevant authorities that they need to get their house in order where they have a responsibility for maintaining water courses. This applies equally upstream and downstream of towns and villages but the agency must be provided with meaningful funds in order to undertake these additional tasks.

"Land managers and farmers are ideally placed to help prevent downstream flooding through managed flood alleviation projects. We have been consulting with partners to try to find ways of funding this type of scheme through environmental contracts. There is huge potential if the Government can be flexible enough to encourage environmental markets that can then save millions of pounds downstream."

The CLA will be looking closely at how the extra £37.5 million that has been made available is spent - along with how the proposals are implemented so that land managers can make a positive contribution.

Sir Michael Pitt's review – launched today (25 June 2008) - recommends working with natural processes to reduce flooding risk.

For more, follow the link here:

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