THE Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee is holding an inquiry into the approach to flood maintenance measures.

The committee, chaired by Anne McIntosh, MP for Thirsk, Filey and Malton, published a report on managing flood risk last July when it expressed concern about cuts in maintenance funding for flood defences and watercourses – warning that communities could be left exposed to flooding threats.

Following the flooding in Somerset and elsewhere it is to hold a short inquiry on the implications of the winter floods and follow up on the maintenance issues and recommendations that the committee raised last year. The committee is inviting written evidence on:

  • What lessons are being learnt from the winter floods in relation to the approach to maintenance work and what changes to the approach should be made before next winter
  • How funding is allocated by the Government and the Environment Agency to maintenance work and how this can be more transparent
  • Is the responsibility for maintenance work allocated in the best way and how can it be improved. What maintenance role should Internal Drainage Boards, local authorities and landowners take
  • In what circumstances is dredging effective in reducing flood risks The deadline for receipt of written evidence is Thursday, March 20.

The inquiry page is available on the EFRA website.