“Poor” Progress Made on Delivering SuDS, says CIWEM review

Image of Downstream Defender protecting wetland

Progress on delivering Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) “has been poor” during the past five years and more needs to be done to resolve issues of guidance, maintenance and adoption, according to the Chartered Institution of Water & Environmental Management (CIWEM).

In 2010 the Institution published Fitting the Bill: A Manifesto for Environmental Action, which defined key areas requiring urgent action over the parliamentary term.With the next General Election fast approaching, CIWEM has revisited the document, comparing the Coalition Government’s progress against the original manifesto.

Fitting the bill: The Coalition’s delivery against CIWEM’s 2010 Manifesto welcomes the Water Act 2014, which has put in place a duty on the financial regulator Ofwat to ensure resilience in the water sector.   In its original manifesto CIWEM said it wanted: “The incorporation of SuDS (Sustainable Drainage Systems) into all suitable developments to reduce flooding, pollution and damage to the environment.”  Against this target, the report CIWEM notes:

“Progress on delivering sustainable drainage systems has been poor. Guidance, maintenance, adoption and how they are dealt with in the planning system need resolving.”

In a public statement on its website, the professional membership organisation urges the next Government to ensure that its policies place a healthy environment at the heart of a sustainable economy.

Dr Simon Festing, CIWEM’s Chief Executive said: “This Government may technically have been the greenest ever, but as many commentators have observed, the bar has been set exceptionally low.  As our analysis against measures we had hoped to see significant progress on over the last five years shows, there is an open goal waiting for the next Government to genuinely achieve that accolade.  Another five years has passed with insufficient action on the environment, which sustains our society and economy.  In school report parlance, this student must try harder.”

Download CIWEM: Fitting the Bill?  The Coalition’s Delivery against CIWEM’s 2010 manifesto.




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