Because of’ glacial development’ on conservation initiatives, the Scottish government has been accused of placing communities at risk of flooding.
The allegation was made by the Liberal Democrats after official statistics revealed that so far only seven of the 42 schemes allocated in 2015 for implementation by 2021 have been completed.
Another seven are under construction, nine are merely “confirmed” and the other 19 are “under development.”
Moreover, since they were revealed, the expense of many of the projects has jumped, with the overall forecast of £ 402 million made by councils in 2016/17 now valued at £ 632 million.
Cost estimates have not, however, been given for two schemes, a completed one at Broxburn and proposed work on the Water of Leith.
The 42 schemes were “prioritized” by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) and “identified for implementation between 2016 and 2021, subject to funding being made available by the Scottish Government and local authorities.”
In Hawick in the Borders, the projects include a flood protection project which will cover 900 homes.
From the initial estimate of £37.4 million to £80 million, the cost has more than doubled and is projected to be completed by winter 2022.
The cost of the Grangemouth flood protection scheme in the Falkirk Council area, which is being built, has also risen from £ 111.5 million to £ 220 million.
In reaction to parliamentary questions, the statistics and data were released.
In Sepa’s own words, there were 42 prioritized flood protection projects listed for implementation between 2016 and 2021, Scottish LibDem environment spokeswoman Molly Nolan said.
This new study reveals that only a few of them have been completed. That is glacial development.
Without this job, communities across Scotland are left defenceless every winter.
Last winter, we saw again how devastating floods can be to whole towns and regions.
“From Aberdeenshire to the Borders, communities can’t forget how damaging flooding can be to their homes and businesses. Any downpour or storm can cause anxiety.”
“Flooding has become an all-too-common hazard in recent years. This will only get worse as the climate emergency worsens. The Scottish Government must ensure local authorities have the resources they need to protect our communities and ensure these projects are delivered swiftly.”In recent years, flooding has become an all-too-common risk. This will only get worse as the climate emergency worsens. The Scottish Government must ensure that local authorities have the resources they need to protect our communities and ensure that these projects are rapidly delivered.
The Scottish government said the initial costs were focused on what local authorities provided in 2016/17, in response to parliamentary questions.
Environment Minister Roseanna Cunningham said, “The 14 flood risk management strategies published in December 2015 by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) set out goals and actions for the management of flood risk in potentially vulnerable areas.”
“SEPA prioritized the incorporation of 42 flood control steps in the Flood Risk Management Strategies released in 2015. The implementation of the 42 schemes prioritized in this cycle is planned to begin by the local authorities, but it is understood that construction will not be completed within this six-year period.
“Flood control projects can impact individuals, communities and the environment and require careful and thorough planning.”