04Jun 2017

Welsh Government’s consultation on mandating SuDS

Phil Chatfield, Welsh Government


The Welsh Government published voluntary standards for sustainable drainage in January 2016, following a public consultation in 2015. The standards set out principles to be taken into account in designing surface drainage for new developments in Wales, as well as a set of standards which should be met.


Evidence from developers and local authorities made it clear that unless the standards became mandatory, they would have little impact. So earlier this year we commissioned work to review the costs and benefits of the SuDS approach for new developments in Wales. The research  was undertaken for us by consultants and showed significant potential benefits  the report can be read here.


We are now consulting on the next step, which is to implement Schedule 3 of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010. This would require developers to submit an application for the surface water drainage of any new development to the local authority for approval. The drainage system would need to comply with National Standards published by Welsh Ministers, based on those published in 2016. The consultation document outlines how the Schedule 3 process will operate and seeks views on various aspects of the system and its introduction. This includes questions relating to Schedule 3 itself, as well as the regulations required for its implementation covering matters such as types of developments which might be exempt from approval, approval timescales, the application fee structure and an appeals process.


We are also seeking feedback on the use of and possible amendments to the Non-statutory standards for sustainable  including the need for maintenance requirements to be part of the approvals application.


The consultation package can be viewed here and includes an impact assessment and an outline approvals process.


The closing date for comments is 11 August 2017 – we’d like to hear your views.



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