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Environment Agency targets urban drainage

Urban drainage management is at the heart of Environment Agency’s investigations into this summer’s floods, chairman Sir John Harman confirmed last week.

He added that the early findings of the Agency’s review into the floods mirrored those of the interim report into the earlier flooding in Hull, and again called for one single national body to be responsible for setting a strategic framework to understand, mitigate and manage urban flood risk.

The report also identified a need to strengthen building regulations to incorporate flood-resilience measures and encourage insurers to provide incentives for properties that have such measures.

However, Mouchel Parkman technical director Martin Osborne said the Agency’s findings, which will feed into Sir Michael Pitt’s independent review of he floods, did not go far enough.

“We need clarity on what we expect sewers to do,” said Osborne. “Sewers are designed for 1 in30 year events but in storms where the system is overwhelmed they are still blamed for failing to be big enough.”

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