This report focuses on the benefits of using innovative, sustainable urban drainage schemes to protect freshwater ecosystems, mitigate the effects of climate change and help to reduce the impact of flooding in UK cities. Sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) can be used to manage surface water and in turn improve water quality, increase biodiversity and reduce flood risk.
In contrast to the traditional approach of managing surface water by piping it quickly away from vulnerable, valuable places protected by defences, SuDS technologies offer an alternative. The report finds that the relative lack of SuDS installation and retrofitting is not due to cost or technological limitations, but is because of the current institutional, regulatory and legislative context. This report encourages the combination of SuDS and more conventional solutions to adapt to climate change and reduce flood risk.