Banff and Buchan Liberal Democrat candidate, Alison Smith, has called for action to protect land, infrastructure, property and even human life in light of recent floods and coastal erosion.
Since torrential rain in late September, 10 feet (3m) of land has been washed away in the Greenbanks area of Banff. A stretch of footpath was also washed away. Unprecedented flooding occurred in Portsoy in 2017. Roads and properties in Pennan, Gardenstown and Crovie have also been affected by landslips.
Alison Smith said
Recent damage will be fixed, but what about the future? There are genuine concerns that Greenbanks will be washed away and that lower Banff could become vulnerable to flooding. This deters investment in lower Banff. Economic damage is also feared in Turriff, where the recent flooding of the Deveron could affect fish stocks for the next three to five years, with knock-on effects on tourism.
Our coastal areas are particularly vulnerable to erosion. Given changing weather patterns and the likelihood of rising sea levels, we need to start planning ahead. Instead of asking the Council and local businesses to apply to the Scottish Government for little pots of money to fix damage after the event, it is time to prepare for the future.
A full assessment of potential damage to land, property and infrastructure – and also the impact on the local economy – under various climate change scenarios is necessary. The next step is to take preventative action. This will cost money, but it needs to happen.
The Liberal Democrats have announced a £5bn flood defence fund, which includes money for coastal defence.
This is a 2019 General Election Campaign press release.
You can see all candidates in the Banff & Buchan constituency here and read the My Turriff statement on our transparency here.