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Science Policy Fellowship: Policy to Preparedness: Flood policy and community engagement

Flooded Field - Photo Credit: Gordon Henderson

CREW Code: CSPF2023_03

Theme: Hydrological Extremes, Coasts and Risk Management

Type of project: CREW Science Policy Fellowship

Project Status: Project complete. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

Lead research team: Glasgow Caladonian University

The findings of the report show that recent flood-related policies are beneficially interconnected at regional, Scottish and UK levels. The egalitarian approach evident within them is supportive of climate and social justice. However, while egalitarian policy approaches are the ideal when pursuing climate and social justice, such policies face a complex test when they are implemented amongst existing inequalities in society. 

 

The research team found distribution of physical flood risk is not fair nor equal, nor are the social circumstances of many who live on low incomes with limited resources. Recognition of the diversity of circumstances, viewpoints and vunerabilities in Scotland is essential to build place-based sustainable community flood resilience. 

This project has completed. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

 

Project Objectives

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Science Policy Fellowship: Resilience to Fluvial Flooding: Knowns and Unknowns to Recommendations for Management

Flooded river onto field - Photo Credit: Andrew Tabas

CREW Code: CSPF2023_02

Theme: Hydrological Extremes, Coasts and Risk Management

Type of project: CREW Science Policy Fellowship

Project Status: Project complete. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

Lead research team: Heriot-Watt University

In this Science Policy Fellowship, the research team aimed to critique what we know and don’t know about fluvial flood risk, resilience and management. The research team used the epistemological construct of “known knowns, known unknowns and unknown unknowns” to assess both scientific and stakeholder knowledge. The team conducted a Rapid Evidence Assessment utilising the power of AI to synthesise thousands of papers and to produce network visualisations of keywords and conducted a workshop with key stakeholders. Four themes emerged; 1) Climate Change; 2) Flood Generating Hydrology; 3) Natural Flood Management; and 4) Stakeholder Engagement.

This project has completed. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

Project Objectives

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Science Policy Fellowship: Building Public Health Resilience to Fluvial Flooding in Scotland

Road closed due to flooding - Photo Credit: Mark Wilkinson

CREW Code: CSPF2023_01

Theme: Hydrological Extremes, Coasts and Risk Management

Type of project: CREW Science Policy Fellowship

Project Status: Project complete. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

Lead research team: University of Glasgow

Climate change is increasing our exposure to fluvial flooding in Scotland. Physical and mental health are negatively impacted by flooding, with the greatest health impacts in the UK and Scotland on mental health. This CREW Policy Brief reviews the literature on the public health impacts of fluvial flooding, including physical and mental health impacts, and identifies factors that influence health resilience to flooding. 

Key Scottish flood-related and public health policies were analysed to identify knowledge gaps and mechanisms to incorporate public health resilience to fluvial flooding in Scotland. To build health resilience in Scotland the reseach team recommend that further research is undertaken to understand health impacts on vulnerable groups (knowing who, where and when) and to implement this knowledge into localised flood emergency management, as a public health priority. 

This project has completed. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

Project Objectives

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23rd January 2024

Flood Resilience in Scotland

CREW will be hosting a workshop in collaboration with three CREW Science Policy Fellowship projects:

Workshop 1 River Flooding, Management and Resilience: The Knowns and Unknowns. Research lead: Ian Pattison, Heriot Watt University

Workshop 2 Policy to Preparedness: Pluvial and fluvial flooding, perceptions, and potential behaviour change. Research lead: Fiona Henderson, Glasgow Caledonian University

Workshop 3 Building public health resilience to fluvial flooding in Scotland. Research lead: Rhian Thomas, University of Glasgow

Reflections during the day will assist in the production of three short briefing papers, which will support the development of Scotland’s first Flood Resilience Strategy.

 

Reuse Valve Cover Provides Access to Recycled Water Attribution = This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.  See here: Wiki commons https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mastrangelo_-_Reuse_-_2013.jpg

New publication: Making waves: Promoting municipal water reuse without a prevailing scarcity driver

The article below has been provided to CREW by the report authors: Dominic Duckett, Mads Troldborg, Sarah Hendry, Hubert Cousins

Talk to a Scot about water reuse and you may encounter bewilderment. ‘We don’t need water recycling in Scotland: It rains all the time’! Indeed, the abundance of water in our natural environment coupled with high precipitation makes many people in Scotland and other ‘wet’ parts of the world, question the need for water efficiency. However, efficient use of our precious water is something that everyone ought to take seriously. Our new paper makes the case for greater water reuse here and now.

We are facing a Climate Emergency yet we use non-renewable energy to purify water beyond what is necessary for many uses. For example, we wastefully wash vehicles and water our gardens with water processed to drinking water standards. Furthermore, the provision of safe water is a process that requires significant investment in infrastructure  to capture, treat, store and distribute it, all of which incur a carbon footprint. Ageing infrastructure and increasing demands combine to strengthen the argument for provisioning water efficiently and recycling it where appropriate not wasting it.

Hydronation scholar Hubert Cousin https://www.dundee.ac.uk/people/hubert-cousin is working to bring about the changes that we believe are necessary to make Scotland a world leader in this reuse endeavour. His research aims to identify barriers to the implementation of a water reuse policy in Scotland and promote solutions to overcome them.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the wealth of water reuse research has concentrated around scarcity and/or rapid urbanisation contexts. There is nothing like water shortage to focus hearts and minds on alternative supply arrangements. Thankfully, desperately needed progress has been achieved in contexts of scarcity although huge global challenges remain. Less progress has been achieved in water rich contexts; a fact illustrated by the lack of change on the ground in countries like Scotland. Without the driving force of scarcity, no other catalyst has come close to incentivising water recycling to the same extent. To advance municipal scale reuse projects in locations where scarcity is not forcing the issue, for example here in Scotland, there is a need to predicate water reuse on different drivers, specifically the Climate Emergency (which Scotland was among the first nations to declare) and the circular economy. While alternative drivers remain relatively weak, barriers appear intractable preventing progress towards water recycling. The law around water incorporates complex regulatory frameworks often proving intransigent; Public trust in the safety and equity of reforms is easily eroded with operators not enjoying the confidence of end users; The so-called yuck factor describes an instinctive repugnance to the idea of using recycled water. These barriers are critically reviewed in the new paper. The battering ram of scarcity demolishes obstacles but without it much greater ingenuity and effort is required to mobilise reform.

Of course, there are growing scarcity concerns in Scotland with disruptions to supply occurring more frequently with extreme weather events and the changing climate. However, we argue, in our new paper (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.watres.2023.120965) , for new approaches and new arguments to be advanced making the case for recycling where scarcity is not an imperative. The notion of a ‘yum’ factor, whereby positive sentiments are nurtured to combat instinctive repugnance is advanced as a strategic objective to promote more rapid expansion of municipal scale reuse. We also welcome the Scottish Government’s water, wastewater and drainage policy consultation and hope our research can contribute to effective policy development.

Image of Water of Fleet (Courtesy of I. Fortune)
Scottish Government's Water, wastewater & drainage policy consultation is open until 21st February 2024.

The consultation seeks views on the Scottish Government’s proposed principles and considerations in developing policy for the future of the water industry in Scotland in response to the climate emergency.

Responses can be made using the Scottish Government’s consultation hub, Citizen Space (http://consult.gov.scot).

You can access and respond to this consultation online at https://consult.gov.scot/energy-and-climate-change-directorate/water-was....

CRW2023_09 Methodologies for sampling fish populations in Scottish freshwater lochs

Loch Reflection - Photo Credit: Tim Winterburn/UHI Inverness

CREW Code: CRW2022_09

Theme: Hydrological Extremes, Coasts and Risk Management

Project status: Project complete. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

Type of project: Capacity Building

Lead research team: University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI)

An understanding of the fish species present and their abundance in Scottish lochs is required for management and conservation purposes, and also to fulfil regulatory requirements. Furthermore, the recent increase in pumped storage hydro-electric development proposals involving large freshwater lochs has the potential to create additional pressures on fish populations. In order to address this, it is important that fish populations are properly assessed during environmental impact assessments and scoping. While a variety of established methods for fish monitoring exist, there is no ’one size fits all’ method, therefore careful consideration is needed in order to determine the best approaches to monitoring. It is therefore important that we have an understanding of the ecological data requirements, and how best to attain these across space and time in order to ensure that fish populations in Scottish freshwater lochs are adequately protected.

The aim of this project was to assess the currently available methodologies for sampling fish populations in Scottish freshwater lochs. Acknowledging the complexity and longstanding challenges with fish monitoring in standing freshwaters, the main objective here was to produce guidelines which support the development of suitable fish assessment programmes.

This project has completed. Click here to visit the publication page to view the project outputs.

Project Objectives

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Type of project: CREW Science Policy Fellowship

Overview: CREW Science Policy Fellowships intend to support evidence-based decisions by providing the opportunity for Scotland’s research community to advocate for critical science that addresses upcoming water-related policy, regulatory and/or industry needs.  This ‘research-push’ workstream compliments CREW’s ‘policy-pull’ Capacity Building and Call Down workstreams in facilitating exchanges of expert knowledge between Scottish Higher Education Institutes (HEIs) and Research Institutes, and policymakers, regulators, and industry representatives. 

Eligibility: CREW Science Policy Fellowship funding is open to applications from all relevant Scottish HEIs and Research Institutes (approved subcontractors).  Approved subcontractors have received a copy of CREW’s Terms and Conditions.  CREW encourages applications from experienced to early career researchers (ECRs) under the supervision and mentorship of experienced researchers.

Autumn 2023: CREW commissioned three Science Policy Fellowships which are aligned to, and support, the development of Scotland’s first Flood Resilience Strategy. 

Project Status: All projects complete.

Please use the links below to access the project outputs for each project:

Building Public Health Resilience to Fluvial Flooding in Scotland

Policy to Preparedness: Flood Policy and Community Engagement

Resilience to Fluvial Flooding: Knowns and Unknowns to Recommendations to Management

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Project Objectives

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CREW's Register of Expertise

Connecting opportunity and capability in water science and policy

Visit register.crew.ac.uk

 

Connect to opportunities
Reach out to colleagues and share your work
Explore skills and find solutions
Widen your network

 

CREW's water sector Register of Expertise was launched on World Water Day March 22nd 2023. 

Learn all about it here!

 

Aim: The Register of Expertise aims to:

  • support colleagues in the Scottish water community access information on water experts and expertise;
  • provide a platform to increase visibility and interconnectedness when searching for new project consortia and wider collaborations; and
  • facilitate a network of expertise from academia, industry, regulation, and policy.

Development: The project was annouced at a CREW engagement workshop with Higher Education Institutes and Research Institutes, and suggestions and feedback was taken on board.  A scoping study reviewed the evidence base on contemporary research taxonomies, related methodologies and technical characteristics and functionality of a range of online expert-finding systems.

Find an Expert: The Register of Expertise contains information on who relevant experts are, where they are working, what role, research expertise, experience, and skills they possess and how they contribute to CREW projects and Scotland’s science: policy interface on water. Search by (a combination of) Geographical region of research operations, specialist areas, environmental sector, discipline, technology, role or by name! 

Register: Researchers and practitioners alike can register in seven steps from a mobile phone or computer. Accounts are verified by the CREW team, then users can complete their profiles and update them at any time.  Users can also link to their existing profiles and identifiers (e.g., LinkedIn, ResearchGate, Orchid) and reference key CREW publications and wider outputs.

If you have any queries about the Register, please email RoECoordinator@crew.ac.uk

CRW2023_07 Increasing flood resilience: residential and community rainwater run-off retention solutions

Person stepping in surface water with street in background - Photo credit: Julian Scott

Type of project: Capacity Building

Aim: The project aim is to evaluate and compare the cost effectiveness and efficacy of residential and community property rainwater run-off retention solutions to increase flood resilience and, develop a decision support infographic to inform future planning and/or development decisions.

Project Status: Project in progress

 

 

 

 

 

 

Project Objectives

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