Published on February 19, 2014
Flood Risk Management Guidelines A look back 4 years on Jonathan Cooper Managing Director JBA Ireland
The Documents Guidelines for Planning Authorities Technical Appendices
What did the guidelines set out to achieve • Reducing future risk by better planning • Managing existing risk through land use change • Planning led decisions based on understanding risk • Sustainable place making through a sequential approach to flood risk New Development C O N S E Q U E N C E Climate Change RISK Asset Deterioration Flood Alleviation Schemes. PROBABILITY
How did the guidelines deliver this? • Justification Test for Spatial Planning • Justification Test for Development Management • 3 levels of Flood Risk Assessment over 3 stages
Scales and Stages of Flood Risk Assessments
Definition of Flood Zones Zone Zone A High probability of flooding. Zone B Moderate probability of flooding. Zone C Low probability of flooding. Description This zone defines areas with the highest risk of flooding from rivers (i.e. more than 1% probability or more than 1 in 100) and the coast (i.e. more than 0.5% probability or more than 1 in 200). This zone defines areas with a moderate risk of flooding from rivers (i.e. 0.1% to 1% probability or between 1 in 100 and 1 in 1000) and the coast (i.e. 0.1% to 0.5% probability or between 1 in 200 and 1 in 1000). This zone defines areas with a low risk of flooding from rivers and the coast (i.e. less than 0.1% probability or less than 1 in 1000).
Classification of vulnerability of development Vulnerability Class Land use and types of development include: Highly vulnerable development Garda, ambulance and fire stations (including essential infrastructure) Hospitals and schools; Dwelling houses, student halls of residence and hostels. Less vulnerable development Buildings used for: retail, leisure, warehousing, commercial, industrial and non-residential institutions; Land and building used for agriculture and forestry; Local transport infrastructure. Water-compatible development Flood control infrastructure; Amenity open space, outdoor sports and recreation and essential facilities such as changing rooms; Lifeguard and coastguard stations.
Sequential Approach using probability and consequence
Justification Test – How has it been implemented Strategic Flood Risk Assessments • SFRAs are the most important step in these guidelines • Initially there was reticence in local planning depts • Lack of flood maps/skills • Kicking the can down the “planning” road • Cl 5.27 made it clear that SFRA was needed • Generally quality of SFRAs is approaching best practice examples; http://www.clonmelbc.ie/media/FINAL%20SFRA.pdf
Outcomes from SFRAs • Improving and providing flood zone maps • PFRA outlines not adequate on their own • Now dezoning via the JT has been straightforward • Nearly full alignment of flood risk and land use zoning
Where the SFRA can add value • Improve quality of FRAs locally • Capacity building • Setting measurable FRM objectives • Climate change adaptation • Scoping out issues with residual risks and how these should be managed • More complete review of all flood risk sources
Current issues in application of guidelines • How to fully embed SFRA into Local Plan and show flood zone maps • Extant permissions and protecting value of land in FZ • FRAs for infrastructure • Still engineering a solution – Flood Zone A can’t become Flood Zone C – Loss of floodplain must be compensated for • JT can’t be applied outside of the settlement boundary!! • All development should have a FRA
Overview of the process • Engineering function in councils overwhelmed by requests to comment on Planning Applications • Planners should be able to screen more PAs • Standard of FRA’s are poor, and not provided with application • RFIs need to be pragmatic • Council planners are now confident in saying no • ABP Inspector generally well versed in Guidelines • Little work for QC’s?
4 years on – Economic outlook is better, but the climate is looking more uncertain
Regeneration and flood risk Kings Island
Flood risk brings tough choices or compromises for our communities Some flooded Limerick homes ‘to be rebuilt on higher ground’ Ministers visit residents of flood-hit St Mary’s Park to assess damage
Challenges from a buoyant development market • Guidelines are robust and have helped shaped sustainable development plans • Extant permissions and previous value of land • Developers still trying to engineer our way out • Building in areas of residual risk • Capacity in council departments and quality of consultants
Considerations for further thought • Reporting and monitoring of flood risk metrics for new development • Case study reviews involving ABP • Further capacity building in local authorities • Review of Technical Appendices on the foot of issue of CFRAM maps and national debate over response to the winter storms of 2014 • Extend guidance on SFRAs to integrate climate change adaptation plans • Model data usage and management
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