UK: Dredging to Reduce Flooding Risk in Somerset ?

The rain fall over the weekend brought floods to Somerset Levels area, according to

Even before the weekend the River Tone started to overtop inundating parts of Curry Moor.

The farmers from that area had been cutting emergency drainage channels on the moor to clear the last of the water from April’s floods. These operations have halted because the flood water is rising again.

The Environment Agency has commenced pumping operations trying to clear some of the freshly-deposited water; however there are fears that much of the water is contaminated by the rotting vegetation from the last floods.

Also, during the weekend there were floods in the Bristol Channel, limiting the rate at which the water can be released into the sea.

The River Parrett drainage board has blamed the problem partly on the fact that the Environment Agency has reduced its dredging program, therefore leaving local rivers less able to carry flood water away rapidly. The agency denies that dredging is a problem.

However, a permanent solution is needed and one of the proposals is creating a new flood relief channel allowing water from Curry Moor to discharge onto North Moor. An urgent feasibility study is underway.


Dredging Today Staff, June 25, 2012