The chairwoman of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Efra) parliamentary committee, Anne McIntosh, has said that the recent flooding reinforces her concerns about Defra's ability to cope on a smaller budget:
Defra is a small ministry facing massive budget cuts and which relies on a large number of arms-length bodies to deliver many significant areas of policy.
Ministers must clarify how further budget cuts over £300 million over the next ... two years will impact on the funding provided to these agencies and the ability of the department to respond to emergencies ...
Recent flooding events over the Christmas and New Year period reinforce the Committee's concerns about cuts to the Defra budget and how these will be realised.
More top news
High pressure kept largely settled on Friday with plenty of summer sunshine. Unfortunately it won't be hanging around this weekend.
The celebrity chef pledged to donate £2 from every pasta dish sold to the rebuilding efforts following the earthquake in Italy.
A 19 year-old from South East London has pleaded guilty after he soiled himself and revealed where he had hidden packets of heroin.