Glossary


Attenuation
Catchment flood management plans (CFMP)
Civil Contingency Act, 2004 (CCA)
Climate change
Conveyance
Exceedence flow
Flood action group
Flood defence
Flood and coastal defence operating authorities
Floods and Water Act
Flood map
Floodplain
Flood risk assessment (covers all scales of assessment)
Flood zone
Fluvial flooding
Freeboard
Future Water
Greenfield land
Local development framework (LDF)
Local development documents (LDDs)
Local resilience forum
Main river
Ordinary watercourse
Permitted development rights
Planning Policy Statement (PPS)
Pluvial flooding
Previously-developed land (often referred to 'brownfield land')
Regional flood risk appraisal (RFRA)
Regional spatial strategy (RSS)
Resilience
Resistance
Return period
Residual risk
Run off
Section 106 Agreement
Sewage
Sewerage
Shoreline management plan (SMP)
Site-specific flood risk assessments (FRAs)
Standard of protection
Strategic flood risk assessments (SFRA)
Supplementary planning document
Surface water management plans
Sustainable drainage systems (SUDS)
Sustainability appraisal
Windfall sites

 

Attenuation
Reduction of peak flow and duration of a flow event.

Catchment flood management plans (CFMP)
A strategic planning tool through which the Environment Agency will work with other decision makers within a river catchment to identify and agree policies for sustainable flood risk management. It assesses current and future flood risk for all inland sources of flooding, considers opportunities and constraints within a catchment, and alternative options to arrive at long-term policies for sustainable flood risk management.

Civil Contingency Act 2004 (CCA) 
This act delivers a single framework for civil protection in the UK. As part of the act, local resilience forums (LRFs) must put into place emergency plans for a range of circumstances including flooding.

Climate change
Long-term variations in global temperatures and weather patterns, both natural and as a result of human activity. See also:

Climate change: adaptation
Climate change and energy

Conveyance
The movement of water from one location to another.

Exceedence flow
Excess flow that emerges on the surface once the conveyance capacity of a drainage system is exceeded.

Flood action group
Local community groups who aim to ensure that all local authorities work closely together to manage flood risk and deliver an action plan to minimise flood risk within their area.

Flood defence
Flood defence infrastructure, such as flood walls and embankments, intended to protect an area against flooding to a specified standard of protection.

Flood and coastal defence operating authorities
The Environment Agency, local authorities and internal drainage boards with legislative powers to undertake flood and coastal defence works.

Floods and Water Act
The Flood and Water Management Act was commenced in April 2010. It clarifies the legislative framework for managing flood risk in England.

Flood map
A map produced by the Environment Agency showing the likelihood of flooding in all areas of England and Wales, assuming there are no flood defences. Only covers river and sea flooding.

Floodplain
An area of land that borders a watercourse, an estuary or the sea, over which water flows in time of flood, or would flow but for the presence of flood defences where they exist.

Flood risk assessment (covers all scales of assessment)
A study to assess the risk to an area or site from flooding, now and in the future. It should also assess the impact that any changes or developments on the site or area will have on flood risk to the site and elsewhere. It may also identify, particularly at more local levels, how to manage those changes to ensure that flood risk is not increased. Planning Policy Statement 25 (PPS25) differentiates between regional, sub-regional and strategic and site-specific flood risk assessments.

Flood zone
A geographic area within which the flood risk is in a particular range, as defined in PPS25.

Fluvial flooding
Flooding caused by rivers.

Freeboard
The difference between the flood defence level and the design flood level.

Future Water
The Government's water strategy for England, 'Future Water' was published on 7 February 2008. This strategy sets out the Government's long-term vision for water and the framework for water management in England.

Greenfield land
Land that has not been previously developed.

Local development framework (LDF) 
A non-statutory term used to describe a folder of documents which includes all the local planning authority's local development documents (LDDs). The local development framework will also comprise the statement of community involvement, the local development scheme and the annual monitoring report.

Local development documents (LDDs) 
All development plan documents which will form part of the statutory development plan, as well as supplementary planning documents which do not form part of the statutory development plan.

Local resilience forum
A group required under the Civil Contingencies Act, 2004 who are responsible for the coordination of emergency planning in local areas.

Main river
A watercourse – designated on a statutory map of main rivers, maintained by the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) – on which the Environment Agency has permissive powers to construct and maintain flood defences.

Ordinary watercourse
All rivers, streams, ditches, drains, cuts, dykes, sluices, sewers – other than public sewers – and passages through which water flows but do not form part of a main river. Local authorities and, where relevant, internal drainage boards have similar permissive powers on ordinary watercourses, as the Environment Agency has on main rivers.

Permitted development rights
Qualified rights to carry out certain limited forms of development without the need to make an application for planning permission, as granted under the terms of the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995.

Planning Policy Statement (PPS) 
A statement of policy issued by central government to replace 'Planning Policy Guidance Notes'.

Pluvial flooding
Flooding caused by rain.

Previously-developed land (often referred to 'brownfield land')
Land which is or was occupied by a permanent structure, including the curtilage of the developed land and any associated fixed surface infrastructure, as defined in Public Policy Statement 3 (PPS3 annex B).

Regional flood risk appraisal (RFRA)
Carried out by regional planning bodies in consultation with the Environment Agency to provide a broad understanding of the risk created by flooding to the region. The appraisal enables flood risk to be taken into account when determining strategic locations for growth and infrastructure as part of the regional spatial strategy (RSS). 

Regional spatial strategy (RSS)
A broad development strategy for a region for a 15 5o 20-year period prepared by the regional planning body.

Resilience
Constructing the building in such a way that although flood water may enter the building, its impact is minimised, structural integrity is maintained and repair, drying and cleaning are facilitated.

Resistance
Constructing a building in such a way as to prevent flood water entering the building or damaging its fabric. This has the same meaning as flood proof.

Return period
The long-term average period between events of a given magnitude which have the same annual exceedence probability of occurring.

Residual risk
The risk which remains after all risk avoidance, reduction and mitigation measures have been implemented.

Run-off
The flow of water from an area caused by rainfall.

Section 106 Agreement (Update potentially needed in light of Community Infrastructure Levy and other changes to planning system.)
Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended) allowing local planning authorities to negotiate arrangements whereby the developer makes some undertaking if he or she obtains planning permission. These are known interchangeably as planning agreements, planning obligations or planning gain.

Sewage
Waste water and excrement conveyed in sewers.

Sewerage
The provision of drainage by sewers.

Shoreline management plan (SMP)
A plan providing a large-scale assessment of the risk to people and to the developed, historic and natural environment associated with coastal processes. It presents a policy framework to manage these risks in a sustainable manner.

Site-specific flood risk assessments (FRAs)
Produced by developers at the planning application stage to demonstrate how flood risk will be managed from all sources of flooding taking into account climate change.

Standard of protection
The design event or standard to which a building, asset or area is protected against flooding, generally expressed as an annual exceedence probability.

Strategic flood risk assessments (SFRA)
Produced by local planning authorities to inform their local development documents (LDDs). The SFRA will evaluate the effects of climate change on all sources of flooding and consider appropriate policies for development in or adjacent to flood risk areas.

Supplementary planning document  
A supplementary planning document is a local development document that may cover a range of issues, thematic or site specific, and provides further detail of policies and proposals in a 'parent' development plan document.

Surface Water Management Plans (SWMPs)
A plan produce to address surface water management issues in a defined area. Such a plan will often involve a number of stakeholders including the local authority, sewerage undertaker, Environment Agency and Internal Drainage Board (where there is one) and may be produced to address existing flooding legacy issues or to support the sound implementation of new development.

Sustainable drainage systems (SuDS)
A sequence of management practices and control structures, often referred to as SuDS, designed to drain water in a more sustainable manner than some conventional techniques. Typically these are used to attenuate run-off from development sites.

Sustainability appraisal
An integral part of the planning process which appraises the economic, social and environmental effects of a plan in order to inform decision making that aligns with sustainable development principles.

Windfall sites
Sites which become available for development unexpectedly and are therefore not included as allocated land in a planning authority's development plan.