Flood Risk Management Plan now published

Burn of Dale in flood. Credit: SIC

Shetland Islands Council has recently published the updated Local Flood Risk Management Plan for Shetland, covering the period from 2022-2028. 

Flood risk management plans form part of Scotland’s route map for reducing the effects of flooding on communities and they set the national direction of future flood risk management, helping to target investment and coordinate actions across public bodies. 

In December 2021, SEPA published the national flood plan in collaboration with all 32 local authorities, Scottish Water and other organisations with a responsibility or interest in managing flooding. 

The Shetland plan now provides greater local detail on how actions will be delivered including who will lead them and how they will be coordinated with other organisations. It also provides further information on when the actions will take place and how they will be funded.  It has been informed by a public consultation and identifies local actions at the following locations:

  • Lerwick – South Burn of Gremista flooding at culverts
  • Scalloway – Main Street flooding from combined effects of rainfall and high tides
  • Vidlin – Breaking waves and spray over the road causeway
  • Walls – Coastal flood risk to houses
  • Cunningsburgh – Flood risk to buildings and the A970 from the burn at the “North Brig”
  • Cullivoe – Coastal flooding of the road near Stonganess

The future impact of climate change on flood risk will depend on how much global action there is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and on characteristics of local areas. 
The impacts of climate change will vary from place to place. More rainfall and rising sea levels will mean places could flood more often or more severely than they used to, or new flood risk could happen in places that did not flood in the past.

Dennis Leask, who chairs the Council’s Development Committee says: “The impact of flooding experienced by individuals, communities and businesses can be devastating and long lasting.  It is vital that we continue to reduce the risk of any such future events and improve Shetland’s ability to manage and recover from any events which do occur. The publication of this Plan is an important milestone in the continuing to improve how we cope with and manage floods in Shetland.”

The Shetland Flood Risk Management Plan 2022-28 is available online and a paper copy is available at 8 North Ness, Lerwick. 

More information on national flood plans is available from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) (PDF link)


Published: 23rd January 2023