Dry feet, sufficient clean water and reliable and useful information. That is what integrated water management means to Rijkswaterstaat. All measures are planned around the users, nature and the landscape and are carried out in close cooperation with water boards, other public authorities, NGOs and private parties.
The Dutch Association of Regional Water Authorities, Deltares, international committees, municipalities and provinces, nature and environmental organisations, the Government Service for Sustainable Rural Development and private enterprises are among the many parties that Rijkswaterstaat worked with on integrated water management in 2009.
Integrated water management
The goal of the cooperation was to achieve the most efficient and flexible construction, management and maintenance of the main water systems in the Netherlands: the major rivers, the coast, the Wadden Sea, the Southwest Delta, the IJsselmeer region and the North Sea.
The Dutch coast protects us from the sea. That is why it is so important to maintain it properly. Rijkswaterstaat is responsible for this. It is our task to maintain the Dutch coastline at 1990 levels: the basic coastline. By means of beach nourishment, we replenish the sand along the entire coastline, both on the beaches and underwater. On average, we add 12 million m³ of sand every year.
Sufficient clean water
Clean and healthy water is a matter of life and death for people, animals and nature. But the water in the Netherlands is not of the same high quality everywhere in the country. The European Water Framework Directive (WFD) sets goals to be met by 2015 for the ecological and chemical condition of surface water and ground water. Rijkswaterstaat is taking 3 types of measure to improve water quality:
- Make Way for Fish will ensure that fish can swim freely from one water to another.
- Clean Water will provide clean and clear water.
- Habitat Recovery comprises a series of measures to develop plant and animal habitats as naturally as possible.
Improving water quality is not only a matter for Rijkswaterstaat. It also involves water boards, provinces and municipalities.