05 June 2009

Environment Agency - Home

Managing flood water

The best way to reduce the risk of flood is to focus on ways that work with nature, not against it, such as constructing flood barriers. So, here we look at the different ways in which we can help minimise the risk.

Managing and planning for floods

Flood water can come from rivers and the sea. We are developing flood management plans for both types of flooding. These are called Catchment Flood Management Plans (CFMPs) for rivers, and Shoreline Management Plans (SMPs) for sea flooding and coastal erosion. These consider a large area of land, so that we can assess how defending from flooding in one area may have an effect elsewhere.

Changes of land use, such as building houses or putting down concrete can also have an effect on flood risk. Because of this, we advise against developments that will have an adverse affect on flooding. Find out more below.

  • Flood defences

    Probably the most visible sign of Flood Risk Management is flood defences. As well as building hard defences of concrete or metal, we try to use natural processes wherever possible to reduce flood risk.

  • Flood schemes

    Find out about some of the flood schemes in your area.

  • Flood strategies

    Find out about some of the flood strategies in your area.

  • Stopping flood defence maintenance at some locations

    If you have a sea defence on your property that is usually maintained by us you may be affected.

  • Catchment Flood Management Plans

    Find out how we will manage the risk of flooding in a catchment over the next 50 to 100 years.

  • Reservoir safety

    For raised reservoirs holding large volumes of water, maintaining the dams holding this water in place is vital to public safety.

  • Channel maintenance

    The Environment Agency routinely considers dredging and vegetation management in watercourses to reduce flood risk. Find out more about dredging, de-silting and vegetation management, which are all types of channel maintenance.