Agenda and minutes

Kent Flood Risk and Water Management Committee - Tuesday, 21st March, 2023 2.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Sessions House, County Hall, Maidstone. View directions

Contact: Matt Dentten  03000 418 381


No. Item


Declarations of Interest by Members in items on the Agenda

To receive any declarations of interest made by Members in relation to any matter on the agenda. Members are reminded to specify the agenda item number to which it refers and the nature of the interest being declared.

Additional documents:


No declarations were made.


Minutes of the meeting held on 9 November 2022 pdf icon PDF 204 KB

To consider and approve the minutes as a correct record.

Additional documents:


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting of the Kent Flood Risk Management Committee held on 9 November 2022 are correctly recorded and that they be signed by the Chairman.


Southern Water - Presentation

Additional documents:


Jon Yates (Pathfinder Delivery Lead, Southern Water) was in attendance for this item.


1.    Mr Yates gave a presentation. The contents of the presentation included: the aims and responsibilities of the Clean Rivers and Seas Task Force, including the three pathfinder sites in Kent; three types of intervention to reduce storm overflow use, including source control, infrastructure optimisation and building larger infrastructure; an update on the Kent catchment; Slow the Flow; and partnership aspirations.


2.    Following a question from a Member, Mr Yates reassured the Committee that Slow the Flow would reduce combined sewer overflows at Swalecliffe to the extent that residents would notice the impact. He cautioned that no single solution would eliminate the issues and emphasised the importance of the scheme’s catchment approach.


3.    In response to a question from a Member, Mr Yates explained that there was no uniformity in the funding arrangements for Southern Water’s significant infrastructure schemes. It was noted that partnership funding agreements were used in some instances.


4.    Mr Yates confirmed that areas were prioritised for new initiatives based on the possible impact of a scheme in the area, following a question from a Member. He added that Southern Water worked with local partners to understand issues and agreed to provide further information on how schemes were prioritised following the meeting.


5.    A Member commended the Slow the Flow initiative and asked how homeowners and businesses in the scheme areas could get involved. Mr Yates explained that involvement in the scheme was voluntary and that significant public communications would be shared shortly in Deal, Margate and Swalecliffe to promote the scheme. He noted that the company had recorded a reduction in combined sewer overflows in areas where water butts had been deployed in the pathfinder catchments.


6.    The Chairman thanked Mr Yates for his presentation and for the answers provided.


RESOLVED to note the content of the presentation.


Met Office - Presentation

Additional documents:


Mark Rogers (Civil Contingencies Advisor, Met Office) was in attendance for this item.


1.    Mr Rogers gave a presentation. The contents of the presentation included: rainfall anomalies; the 3 month weather outlook, with it noted the chance of a warm and dry spring was high; global teleconnection, including the impact of Teleconnections which can influence UK winter climate include El Niño, the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Stratospheric Polar Vortex (SPV); summer projections, which forecast average air temperate increases by the 2030s of 1.1 to 2.3°C, 1.9 to 3.9°C by the 2050s and 3 to 7.3 °C by the 2080s as well as summer precipitation reductions of 4 to 29% by the 2030s, 12 to 44% by the 2050s and 20 to 63% by the 2080s; winter projections, which forecast precipitation increases of 7 to 20% by the 2030s, 9 to 28% by the 2050s and 14 to 49% by the 2080s; and the Beta version of the Met Office’s Climate Data Portal which could be accessed at: The Committee were made aware of UK Climate Projections e-learning available at: us ukcp18.


2.    Following a question from a Member, Mr Rogers confirmed there was no definitive evidence that global warming had a direct impact on El Niño.


3.    In response to a question from a Member, Mr Roger gave a comparison between the 1961-1990 and 1991-2020 climate periods, noting that the average temperature of the UK had increased by 0.8°C, rainfall by 7.3%, and sunshine by 5.6%. He added that whilst there were many variables which impacted towards surface water flooding, there was a strong correlation between higher rainfall and greater surface water flooding.


4.    A Member asked how far in advance and accurate seasonal forecasting were. Mr Rogers explained that the Met Officer produced 3 and 6 month seasonal forecasts. It was noted that whilst accuracy had improved with greater computer power, further progress was to be made.


5.    The Chairman asked whether global teleconnection or global warming was expected to impact fish counts in coastal waters. Mr Rogers highlighted the correlation between higher CO2 and temperate levels, noting that higher water temperatures were likely to impact fish habitation and migration.


6.    The Chairman thanked Mr Rogers for his presentation, the answers given and for agreeing to provide a further update to the Committee at a future meeting.


RESOLVED to note the content of the presentation.


Introduction to the work of the KCC Sustainable Drainage Team and Schedule 3 of the Flood and Water Management Act pdf icon PDF 118 KB

Additional documents:


Neil Clarke (Sustainable Drainage Team Leader, KCC) was in attendance for this item.


1.    The Committee were provided with a report which outlined the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ (DEFRA) plan to implement Schedule 3 of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010, which would require KCC to approve and adopt sustainable drainage in the county and maintain it.


2.    Mr Clarke provided a presentation. The contents of the presentation included: KCC’s role as the Lead Local Flood Authority in planning, registering and maintaining assets; the importance of flood management planning factoring in the projected 175,500 increase in houses in Kent between 2016 and 2036; and the Schedule 3 implementation process, including that it was proposed for maintenance to be funded by commuted sums.


3.    A Member asked where urban intensification had a greater impact on surface water flooding than large scale well managed developments. Mr Tant explained that urban driveways, permitted developments and extensions often exacerbated surface water flooding due to poor drainage and the removal of runoffs.


4.    Following a question from a Member, Mr Clarke confirmed that Schedule 3 only applied to surface water and that it was anticipated that the new burden would be self-funded through applications fees.


RESOLVED to note the content of the report and presentation.


Environment Agency and Met Office Alerts and Warnings and KCC severe weather response activity pdf icon PDF 272 KB

Additional documents:


1.    Mr Harwood introduced the report which updated Members on the present water situation, weather statistics, Environment Agency and Met Office Warnings, and flood response activity since the last meeting of the Committee on 9 November 2022. He provided an update on weather events following the publication of the report, with twelve further flood alerts and three further yellow weather warnings reported.


RESOLVED to note the warnings received since the last meeting of the Committee; and contribute to planning and response policy and practice through oversight and debate.


Future meeting dates

11 July 2023 (14:00)

14 November 2023 (14:00)

14 March 2024 (10:00)

26 June 2024 (10:00)

Additional documents:


RESOLVED that the future meeting dates be noted.