Hydro-Logic is now part of Hydro International.

Russ Wilkes Presents at UDG's 30th Anniversary

13/11/2014

Russ Wilkes has recently presented a paper at the Urban Drainage Group’s autumn conference in Blackpool. One of the topics at the event was Collaborative Working, and Russ was asked to demonstrate how Hydro-Logic Services are involved in multi-stakeholder contributions to flood warning systems. The paper addressed the growing need for a partnering strategy in relation to the funding of flood warning systems in urban areas.

HLS have installed over 500 flood warning systems, and many of them are funded jointly by the Environment Agency, the Local Authority, and the Local Flood Group. Water companies are also contributing to the partnership approach for flood warning funding, with a view to using the data to develop flood forecasting for the benefit of local communities, as well as local authorities. Russ was able to draw on many examples of stakeholder collaboration, including recent projects on the Somerset Levels, Devon Pathfinder, and the Leicester Flood Scheme involving the Environment Agency and Leicester City Council. Small scale projects involving local community flood groups such as Moffat and Much Wenlock also generated some lively discussion.

The funding strategy for each system is on a case-by-case basis, but requires early engagement between all stakeholders to agree the most appropriate mechanism. The initial and ongoing costs often require different sources of funding, with the former being easier to secure than the latter. Whilst the Local Flood Group is able to raise funds for the initial installation, other stakeholders such as the EA are contributing to equipment and ongoing maintenance costs. HLS are seeing that this strategy works, and can see the benefits of the partnership approach at first hand.

The paper was well received, and provoked much discussion not only in the Q&A session afterwards, but also over breakfast in the hotel the following morning!

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