February 1, 2017, by Urban Flood Resilience
Risk, Resilience and Response in a changing Climate
The ‘Risk, Resilience and Response in a changing Climate’ conference was held in Glasgow on the 31st January and hosted by Impact Engagement.
A diverse audience of Scottish planners, flood risk officers, local authority representatives, SEPA (Scottish Environmental Protection Agency), Scottish Water, Scottish Power (SP Energy), Scottish Government, the Scottish Flood Forum and SNIFFER attended, creating a great floor for focused discussion on resilience.
Key presentation notes included Anna Beswicks (Adaptation Scotland) discussion on enabling local action, specifically in regard to the Climate Change Scotland Act 2009, including forward thinking actions such as the Edinburgh Adapts Vision and Plan.
Heather Forbes (SEPA) provided a great overview of NFM (natural flood management) and its role in resilience planning and climate change, showcasing the Eddleston Water and Holnicote Projects and the NFM Handbook developed by SEPA.
Steven Orrs (Land Use Consultants) discussion on their recent research on the effectiveness of Strategic Flood Plans in addressing flood risk and resilience brought home a message that “SEPA has some great advice, but it is not always heard or implemented in a timely manner in planning processes“. He also emphasised the need to change our view of flooding as “just another constraint” and to move towards precautionary and resilience approaches.
Jim McOmish (SP Energy Networks) presented the currently changing dimensions of climate impact on energy provisions, identifying the key issues of storm event severity and gales. Wind is seldom a climate change issue considered in forward planning and his presentation brought forward a clear need for this element of environmental uncertainty and change to be included in future resilience assessment, planning and development.
Featured image caption: Craig McLaren, Director of RTPI Scotland (Royal Town Planning Institute), discussing flooding, resilience and climate change needs interlinked with planning.