Integrated water plan for Lincolnshire launched
A multi-stakeholder initiative with the twin goals of flood protection and ensuring a secure water supply has been launched in Lincolnshire.
The Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership’s new Water Management Plan was launched on Friday with the involvement of over 70 water professionals, business people and academics. The plan, which was given the seal of approval by the Environment Secretary, the Rt Hon Andrea Leadsom MP, in the House of Commons last September, will seek to increase investment in three areas: water supply, flood risk reduction and innovative ways of managing water.
Mark Tinsley, a LEP board director, Chair of the Greater Lincolnshire Water Management Board and a Lincolnshire farmer, was one of the speakers at the launch.
He said: “Greater Lincolnshire is a growth area which is planning to create 100,000 new homes and 29,000 new jobs and grow its economy by £8 billion by 2030.
“My ambition is that we don’t see flooding and water supply as two separate issues but as two sides of the same challenge. This plan is just the beginning; the real task now is whether we can deliver innovative water management projects that meet the needs of our local communities.”
Among the other speakers was Isobel Wright from the Lincoln Institute for Agrifood Technology at the University of Lincoln, who put water supply challenges into perspective and outlined some of the new technology which will help famers manage water more effectively in the future.
Another speaker was Ian Warsap, Chief Executive of the Black Sluice Internal Drainage Board, who described the challenges of managing water over 160,000 acres of low-lying land, most of which is at or below sea level.
Also speaking and on the panel were LEP Chair Ursula Lidbetter MBE, Steve Willis (Chief Operating Officer at Lincolnshire County Council), Steve Moncaster (Project Manager at Anglian Water), Martin Collison (an adviser to the LEP on agrifood) and Professor Simon Pearson from the Lincoln Institute for Agrifood Technology at the University of Lincoln.
Following the launch of the Water Management Plan some delegates took a tour of the recently completed Louth Flood Alleviation Scheme and to put their questions to Deborah Campbell, Flood Risk and Coastal Manager for the Environment Agency.
The Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership is a private and public sector partnership led by the private sector which aims to improve conditions for infrastructure and doing business in the Greater Lincolnshire area.
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