Last week, Leeds City Council’s Flood Risk Manager, Jonathan Moxon, showcased some of Leeds’ recent flood management work to an audience of over 40 major European cities at the annual European Urban Resilience Forum.
Presenting alongside the Environment Agency, Leeds City Council shared details about how the city is using nature-based solutions to improve urban resilience, in particular the natural flood management aspects of the part-European funded Leeds Flood Alleviation Scheme Phase 2. The work has included the creation of new woodland, woody debris dams and wetland, which can slow the flow of water and reduce the risk of flooding – more information about the scheme can be found here.
Another important point of discussion was around some of the key challenges Leeds is facing in implementing nature-based solutions and land management changes on land outside of Leeds which is owned by several different landowners.
The European Urban Resilience Forum, hosted by ICLEI – a global network of local governments for sustainability, formed part of a week-long global event known as Resilient Cities. The forum focused on climate change and the impact it is having on cities, with sessions looking at a wide range of aspects including finance, social justice, food security, infrastructure, health and natural disasters like flooding.
The outputs from the event will feed directly into the ongoing work to better protect Leeds from flooding from the River Aire and our wider work in making Leeds a more resilient city.
Climate change is a major priority for the city with the Council recently declaring a Climate Emergency, as well as setting out a commitment to make Leeds carbon neutral by 2030.