Retain water on floodplains and wetlands
Wetlands are the engines of the water world – filtering water, sustaining flows, reducing floods, storing carbon and providing networks through the landscape for wildlife. Many habitats and species remain critically threatened while taxpayers’ money is still being wasted on flood defence and land drainage works that damage wildlife and ecosystem services but deliver little public benefit.
Restore large areas of wetland and floodplain to create and link vital wildlife habitats, improve water quality, protect soil carbon and reduce urban flooding.
- By 2011, all Government spending on flood risk management works (capital and maintenance) should be prioritised on the basis of need and demonstrable benefit.
- By 2012, the Government should strengthen planning policy to safeguard floodplains and riparian land as part of its commitment to protect wildlife and promote wildlife corridors.
- By 2012, Defra should direct all Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management authorities to protect peat soils from damage caused by flood defence and land drainage works.
- By 2012, the Government and its agencies should implement Lawton Review’s recommendation to support climate adaptation by making space for water and wildlife along river corridors.
Blueprint members will work with landowners and communities to protect, restore and expand wetlands that benefit wildlife, improve water quality, reduce urban flooding and protect soil carbon.