Ben Johnstone, Area Flood & Coastal Risk Manager for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, Environment Agency

I have worked for the Environment Agency for over 25 years. I am the Project Sponsor for PACCo, also known as the Senior Responsible Officer in some organisations, and am responsible for ensuring that the benefits of the project are realised.

I am a Chartered Civil Engineer and worked in bridge design and maintenance prior to moving into flood and coastal risk management. During my early career I was involved in all the technical, ‘hands on’, parts of project delivery from concept, through design and into construction.  I then moved into project management and programme management. The latter part of my career has focussed on leadership, partnership working, strategy and finances.

I have a long term interest in Climate Change Adaptation – as we need to start working with mother nature not against her because in the end she will win!  We can’t just keep building new or higher defences, we need to adapt and learn to co-habit with a changing climate and coastline.  This is what PACCo is all about.

Project Location: Lower Otter Restoration Project, England