Today (19 October 2023), in the House of Commons Chamber, I participated in Oral Parliamentary Questions to the Department of Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs.
I initially asked ‘What steps her Department is taking to protect rural communities in flood-risk areas?’
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Rebecca Pow MP, answered ‘The Government’s six-year £5.2 billion flood investment programme benefits both urban and rural communities. Approximately 40% of schemes and 45% of investments are being directed at rural communities, which have benefited from our frequently flooded fund, our natural flood management fund and our flood and coastal innovation programmes.’
I followed up by asking about the funding allocated to the River Severn Partnership ‘The Minister has visited Shrewsbury a number of times at my invitation, and has heard at first hand from the River Severn Partnership, which is trying to find a holistic solution to the problems of managing Britain’s longest river rather than just creating flood barriers which push the problem downstream. When can give us more information and an update on the resources being afforded to the partnership to support landowners and others who can be part of that solution?’
I then received the following answer ‘I thank my hon. Friend for the great work that he does with the partnership. Both the Secretary of State and I have visited his constituency. There are funds available: the £25 million for natural flood management schemes may be of interest to farmers, and the environmental land management schemes include provisions for temporary storage capacity on farms.’
Click here to view https://youtu.be/fR5aappKTRg.