Since the release of the proposed 20 Year Plan last week, there has been a lot of discussion about the costings and cause of the floods that have devastated the Somerset Levels over the past 2 months.
Flooding on the Levels Action Group (FLAG) insists that dredging will make a major difference to the flood risk of the Somerset Levels, as will the subsequent maintenance and management of the rivers and waterways to the workable standard that it was 20 years ago.
Factors such as modifying farming practises, ensuring that the upper catchment area plants trees to slow the water flow, use sustainable drainage systems to hold water back and other measures will certainly help minimise flooding on the Levels, but the bread and butter of the matter is the continued cleaning and maintaining of the waterways, they said.
Data from the Environment Agency following the flood of 2012 agrees that dredging would have a significant impact on the flooding situation.
Press Release, March 11, 2014