Royal Haskoning’s Fola Ogunyoye appointed chair of CIWEM Rivers and Coastal Group

Posted: Thursday 15th July 2010

Fola Ogunyoye has been appointed chair of the Chartered Institution of Water and Environment Management (CIWEM)’s Rivers and Coastal Group, at its Annual General Meeting earlier this year.

A member of the group for 15 years and an active member of the committee for the past six years, Fola is Royal Haskoning’s fourth representative to be appointed chair of the group.

Formed 60 years ago, the Rivers and Coastal Group plays a leading role in influencing Government and European policy relating to rivers and coasts. It focuses on sustainable water management, and its interaction with people, the economy and the environment, with particular emphasis on the management of risks of flooding and coastal erosion.

Taking the helm at a time when the flood and coastal management industry is going through some of its most important environmental and regulatory changes, Fola is positive about his forthcoming year as chair. He said, “I am delighted to accept the role of Chair of the CIWEM Rivers and Coastal Group at this crucial time for the water management industry.”

“During the coming year I am looking forward to helping the group focus on the important issues of flood and coastal risk. We will use our expertise to help shape, implement and deliver the new legislation that comes out of the Flood and Water Management Act. At this critical time in UK government, where there is pressure on finances, it needs to be recognised that flood and coastal risk is extremely important. We need to ensure the Government continues to focus on this area in order to mitigate further the risk of flooding, such as that experienced in the UK during summer 2007 and November 2009 as well as preventing inappropriate development from increasing the current risk.”

As requirements surrounding the Flood and Water Management Act fall into place, more responsibility will devolve to local authorities to manage localised flood risk. To ensure everyone involved has common understanding, it is the group’s intention to increase membership from local authorities and Internal Drainage Boards.

“The group currently has around 1,000 members,” Fola continues, “but it needs representatives from the local authorities that will be taking ownership as the new legislation comes into play. During my year as Chair, I will be looking to ramp up membership from this area.”

Fola is also supervising mentor for CIWEM’s development training for graduates within Royal Haskoning, and runs the CIWEM professional development scheme to enable graduates become chartered members of the institution.

Previous Royal Haskoning chairs include Sarah Budd, director of Royal Haskoning’s coastal & rivers, and Steve Magenis, business development director, coastal & rivers.

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