Climate change: How flooding will be managed in Sheffield and how you can have your say
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Sheffield Council, in partnership with various authorities and organisations, launched the Connected by Water action plan today – first conceived in 2019 when floods devastated South Yorkshire and forced communities to evacuate.
The plan – covering the whole of the River Don catchment – aims to protect lives, homes, businesses and the environment from the increased risk of flooding caused by climate change which is leading to rising sea levels and wetter winters with more intense rainfall.
Councillor Douglas Johnson, co-operative executive member for climate change, environment and transport, said: “Sheffield is all too familiar with the devastating effects of flooding, we have been working hard over the last decade to protect homes and businesses, and make sure we are resilient and we’re very proud of what we’ve achieved so far.
“The accelerating impact of climate change means we must continue to invest and develop solutions that are not only robust but support our natural environment and tackle the climate emergency we are all facing. This plan supports us to do just that, we can focus on developing schemes that protect Sheffield, while contributing and benefiting from the bigger regional picture.
“We’re really proud to be working in partnership across the region, drawing on our collective strengths and resources. As the plan is aptly titled, we are all connected by water so we have the best chance of success by connecting our goals.”
What is the plan?
The alliance said it will be a ‘living plan’ that will evolve and be shaped by emerging data, knowledge and opportunities over the coming months and years.
At this point, the plan highlights actions currently being taken to reduce risk and build climate resilience across the county with the aim of attracting potential investors and giving communities reassurance that work is happening.
It combines 144 actions and 100 projects with a total investment of £400 million, protecting more than 17,000 homes, businesses and infrastructure across South Yorkshire.
Partners said for every £1 spent on protecting communities, around £5 is avoided in property damages.
Nature-based solutions such as tree planting and land management will be a key element of the plan as they will help reduce flood risk and restore nature by storing carbon.
What is Sheffield currently doing to prevent flooding?
There are several projects under-way in Sheffield including flood alleviation schemes in the Upper Don, Sheaf and Porter catchment and Blackburn Brook.
The council is also on site with pilot work on the Upper Don ‘source to sea’ project developing nature based flood risk solutions in the hills above Sheffield.
Accelerated funding is also enabling work on Limb Brook on the River Sheaf, around Stocksbridge, and around Bradfield.
Have your say on the flood action plan
A consultation on the plan was launched today and it will be open until March 11.
To take part in the consultation, visit https://consult.environment-agency.gov.uk/yorkshire/connected-by-water-south-yorkshire-action-plan/