The pressure to develop is unrelenting. An ever increasing demand for new housing is resulting in the use of more greenfield sites and the loss of their natural drainage patterns. The need to minimise the impact of these changeshas been recognised in the Code for Sustainable Homes, where surface water management is one of only four mandatory elements with the objective being to provide drainage that is as effective as the natural landscape was before the development.
At the same time, the demand to utilise more brownfield land requires more stringent pollution control to prevent pollutant leaching and to maintain water quality. It is for this reason that flood risk, run off and pollution are now amongst the most heavily legislated and monitored areas of planning and construction.
European Water Framework Directive (WFD) 2000
Requires that surface water discharges are managed so as to mitigate their impact on the environment. Incorporated into UK legislation in 2003.
The Pitt Review 2007
Independent review and recommendations after the 2007 floods.
Future Water for England 2008
This strategy sets out the Government’s long-term vision for water and the framework for water management in England.
The Flood and Water Management Act 2010
The Act responds to recent pressure to introduce legislation and addresses the threat of flooding and water scarcity. It draws together the previous recommendations of the Pitt Review and the strategy of Future Water for England thereby giving effect to the WFD in the UK and providing a cohesive approach to water management. Authorities are now required to develop flood risk management strategies and sustainable drainage systems in certain new developments. This will help to manage and reduce the flow of surface water into the sewerage system as well to improve water quality.