Skip to main content

Flood Control

Volume 491: debated on Monday 20 April 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what types of critical infrastructure were categorised as at risk of flooding by the Environment Agency in each of the last five years; and how many of each type were so categorised in each such year. (267550)

The Environment Agency commissioned a report for the first time in 2007 to map and improve its understanding of flood vulnerability of infrastructure at a national scale. The resulting Receptors Vulnerable to Flooding database, which draws heavily on information in the public domain and held by other parties, provides a summary of the vulnerability to flooding of various types of public utility infrastructure.

The Environment Agency is currently working on updating this information for publication in spring 2009. The following table sets out a summary of the Receptors Vulnerable to Flooding database 2007.

Environment Agency 2007 study showing infrastructure overlain on flood risk maps (river and sea flood plains)1

Number of sites in flood zone (flood risk probability)

Asset

Significant (1 in 75)

Moderate (1 in 75-200)

Low (1 in 200 or fewer)

Total in all three zones

Water and sewerage (Number)

737

223

179

1,145

Electricity, generation and distribution (Number)

2,215

2,263

3,818

8,423

Gas, works and distribution (Number)

5

8

10

23

Telephone exchanges (Number)

82

67

86

241

Motorways (km)

139

104

132

382

A roads (km)

884

553

809

2,278

Railway lines (km)

1,470

750

948

3,213

1 Information extracted from the Environment Agency Receptors Vulnerable to Flooding Database 2007.

This information was originally provided to the Pitt Review team but has since been updated because of changes in the methodology used to collate the data. The Cabinet Office (through the newly recruited Natural Hazards team) will take forward this work with the Environment Agency and other organisations as part of the Government’s action plan in response to Sir Michael Pitt’s recommendations.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when he expects to publish the draft Floods and Water Bill. (269530)

We expect to publish the draft Bill in late spring 2009 for pre-legislative scrutiny and public consultation. The final Bill will then be available for introduction in a later parliamentary Session.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what his most recent estimate is of the level of uptake of flood warnings; and by what means such warnings are delivered. (269531)

The Environment Agency's Floodline Warnings Direct is a free service that provides flood warnings direct to customers by telephone, mobile, email, SMS text message and fax.

The Environment Agency has signed up a further estimated 100,000 customers since July 2007, increasing the number of registered customers from 328,767 to the current 433,314.