§ Lord Stoddart of Swindon
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they will request the National Rivers Authority, in consultation with those enterprises or publicly owned bodies responsible for the transport of sewage and its purification, to review within each river catchment the adequacy of flood defences for their installations; the risks of surcharge of foul and surface water draining systems; and their emergency plans related thereto, against the possibility of higher intensities of precipitation than experienced so far in 2002. [HL5783]
§ The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Whitty)
Ofwat has recently undertaken a consultation on flooding from sewers and in publishing the results has said that it will consider proposals from sewerage undertakers to spend more in carrying out more flood alleviation schemes in the period up to 2005. This should help to reduce the risk of sewer flooding cases. The report also said that for the period beyond 2005, consideration for increased expenditure will be taken account of in the periodic review of water prices. The Environment Agency, which incorporates the former National Rivers Authority and Pollution Inspectorate, will be involved in the periodic review process. The agency will also be required to assess the potential pollution from flooding of sites storing or processing toxic material, which would include sewage treatment facilities, as part of their future responsibilities under the Water Framework Directive.