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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S6W-01740
Asked by: Rachael Hamilton, Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
Date lodged: 22 July 2021

Question

To ask the Scottish Government what funding from the 2019-20 budget has been made available to fund projects relating to flooding, and what support is available for Newcastleton in the Scottish Borders, to address flooding problems.

Current status: Answered by Mairi McAllan on 17 September 2021


Answer

In recognition of importance of reducing flood risk the Scottish Government has, since 2007, provided £42 million each year to local authorities through the general capital grant to invest in flood protection measures. In September 2020, the Programme for Government also committed an additional £150 million over five years from 2021-22 to support flood risk management actions. Reducing flood risk is a priority for this Government and we will continue to support authorities to deliver actions that protect our communities.

The Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009 (“the Act”) encourages a co-ordinated, plan-led approach to flood risk management, which runs in six year cycles. As part of the first cycle under the Act, 14 Flood Risk Management Strategies were published in 2015 by SEPA and 14 Local Flood Risk Management Plans (LFRMP) were published in 2016 by local authorities. Actions prioritised to reduce flood risk in Newcastleton are included within the 2016-22 Solway LFRMP; this included a flood study for Newcastleton, which has now been completed by Scottish Borders Council. It is for the Council and other responsible authorities such as Scottish Water to take forward and deliver the actions set out in the Strategies and LFRMPs.

SEPA and local authorities are currently in the process of reviewing and updating the Strategies and LFRMPs for the 2022-28 cycle. Once finalised, the Strategies will be submitted to Scottish Ministers for approval.

We also work closely with key partners to promote community resilience and flood preparedness. We have increased our funding to £195,000 for the Scottish Flood Forum, which provides vital support to communities such as Newcastleton. The Scottish Flood Forum offers advice and information to individuals to help them protect their homes from flooding or to recover from flooding.