Developers: Will recent EA changes to Climate Change Allowances affect your schemes?
New Environment Agency Climate Change Allowances came into effect in England on February 19th 2016, which means that flood extents and flood levels associated with extreme flooding events have generally increased in parts of England, with the increase varying from one river catchment to another.
These changes will have an impact for development schemes near main rivers or coastal and tidal areas - impacting on key planning requirements notably in the areas of flood risk and drainage/environmental assessments. Also, civil and structural engineering design levels such as finished floor levels (FFLs) etc. are likely to increase as well as flood resistance and resilience threshholds in affected areas.
Do you need to act?
The new allowances will apply immediately to all new schemes, and you should ensure that these are taken into account in your planning applications. The EA will base its advice on the previous allowances where development plans or proposals are well advanced and there are some temporary exemptions/transitional arrangements for development plans already submitted for examination and valid planning application already submitted to the local planning authority. If you are in any doubt whether you need to comply with these new allowances, or whether your scheme can be exempt, you should take advice from an appropriately qualified expert.
If you would like more information about how these changes will impact on your development, or guidance about what you should do, please contact Seymour D’Oyley in our Hydrology & Flood Risk Team on 0117 929 2244 or email SeymourD'Oyley@clarkebond.com.