Flooding is one of the biggest natural hazards affecting the safety and sustainability of communities across Wales.
Evidence suggests that changes in our climate will result in heavier and more regular rainfall, stormier weather events and rising sea levels. These factors are likely to increase the impact and frequency of flooding and we need to be prepared. We need to ensure that our decisions, operations and advice to Government and others are underpinned by sound and quality-assured science and evidence.
Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Research and Development Programme
To help meet our science and evidence needs, we work in collaboration with the Welsh Government, Environment Agency and Defra on the joint Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Research and Development programme. To find more information about the programme, click here.
The programme, covering England and Wales, aims to serve the needs of all flood and coastal operating authorities by providing key evidence to:
- inform the development of policy and strategy
- understand and assess coastal and flood risks
- manage flood and coastal erosion assets in a sustainable way
- prepare for and manage flood events effectively
Current active projects that support our national flood risk objectives include:
- Working with Natural Processes
- Understanding flood risk management assets which are no longer actively maintained
- The Performance of Grass and Soil in Resisting Erosion
- Putting People at the Heart of Impact/context Based Flood Warnings
- Sediment Budgets
Completed projects that also support the delivery of our national flood risk objectives include:
- Making better use of local data in flood frequency estimation
- Residual uncertainty allowance – update to freeboard guide
- Public dialogues in flood risk communication
- Evaluation of local arrangements for managing flood risk final report
- Dam and reservoir conduits: inspection, monitoring, investigation, maintenance and repair
Other research opportunities
We also work alongside the Welsh Government to seek additional opportunities to meet gaps in knowledge and evidence, for example through research council grants or by working with universities linking research activities with NRW programmes of work.
Recent examples are projects funded by the Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC), where we have worked with others to support the project and provide case studies:
- Green infrastructure – supporting implementation in river engineering (hyperlinks to follow)
- A Decision Framework for Integrated Green Grey Infrastructure (hyperlinks to follow)
Implementing the outputs from these projects will ensure NRW continue to make decisions on the best available science and evidence. We will continually improve our knowledge by identifying gaps in knowledge and participating in research.