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The Environmental Agency has extended the term of the Black and Veatch flood-management role in the UK to protect those at risk of flooding in England and Wales.

According to the agency, one in six homes in England and Wales is at risk of flooding.

Black and Veatch will continue to help protect those at risk after receiving the two-year extension to its term as a consultant on the National Engineering and Environmental Consultancy Agreement (NEECA) framework.

With the aim of managing the risk of river and sea flooding, the NEECA framework is among the main tools of the Environment Agency’s flood management strategy.

The framework includes the identification of communities and areas at risk of flooding, assessing the most sustainable way to manage the flood risk and, if necessary, constructing flood defences.

Lise Taylor, national framework manager for Black and Veatch’s Environment Agency work, said: ‘Securing the extension to the current NEECA framework was the result of identifying how we could best help the Environment Agency manage the impact of flooding upon communities, commerce and the environment.’ The scope of the Black and Veatch contribution to the framework includes strategic planning to determine districts under threat of flooding and appraising the suitability of proposals to best manage the risk.

The company also provides design and construction supervision services for projects where flood defences need to be built or enhanced to protect people, property and land.

The NEECA extension retains Black and Veatch as consultant to the Environment Agency until autumn 2011.

Taylor added: ‘Delivering the flood management programme will become more efficient as NEECA partners streamline the way they share best practice and manage the supply chain.’ Examples of this include the setting up of cross-consultancy training and communities of practice, creating a network of site supervisor mentors and packaging work to ensure the continuity of teams.

Black and Veatch has recently completed several flood management projects for the Environment Agency.

These include the Lower Lancaster Flood Alleviation Scheme in Lancashire and the Stallingborough Sea Defence Scheme in Lincolnshire.

The NEECA framework provides support for all aspects of a project cycle, from project identification and option appraisal through detailed design and contract documentation to contract supervision and the completion of projects, including post-project appraisals.

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