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To ask the Scottish Government what natural means of flood prevention, including tree and forest planting, are used by (a) it and (b) its agencies.

Answered by Aileen McLeod (05/01/2016):

The Scottish Government is continuing to work with partners to implement the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009. The Act promotes actions that work with nature at a catchment scale as part of a more sustainable approach to flood risk management.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency, working closely in partnership with local authorities, Scottish Water and other stakeholders, has just completed Scotland’s first flood risk management strategies. These promote a nationally consistent, risk-based, plan led approach to flood risk management. Nationally the strategies identify more than 20 specific natural flood management studies and four ground works for delivery between 2016 and 2021. These actions will be predominantly led by local authorities but will involve co-operation and collaboration with a wide range of other organisations and stakeholders including landowners and managers, Forestry Commission Scotland, Scottish National Heritage, National Parks and local environmental partnerships.

To further support natural flood management we are funding research to better understand how actions such as wetland creation, re-meandering and woodland planting can contribute to slowing and storing flood waters and help alleviate flooding to communities downstream.

Current Status: Answered by Aileen McLeod on 05/01/2016
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