Project budget5 108 892 €
ERDF amount3 065 335 €
Climate change is predicted to involve more extreme rainfall events with accelerated loss of topsoil, and hence an increased risk of flooding and drought. This increase in natural risks is combined with a low awareness of the impact and risks of climate change. Given the high economic impacts of flooding, there is a need to maintain and strengthen adaptive capacity in the coastal hinterland areas. New solutions need to be developed and applied to improve resilience. In a context of reduced public financing, better, more robust and cost-effective erosion control and flood defenses are needed.
The objective is to implement a set of cost-effective, innovative actions to reduce flooding. A new participative approach to problem solving and implementation with landowners will be developed. Upstream implementation of the water retention and erosion control measures will reduce flooding and associated issues further downstream. This will result in an additional 168,000m3 water storage, €6.1M cost savings from reduced flood damages and dredging costs, and 1150 households with enhanced flood protection. Successful solutions will be replicable in other regions.
- Implementation and demonstration of water retention features and erosion control measures, and method developed to build knowledge capacity and effective implementation.
- An enhanced knowledge base will stimulate application of principles elsewhere.
Cross border approach
Whilst the participating catchments have different agricultural landscapes they share similar flooding and erosion problems and each country has its own distinct approaches with associated strengths and weaknesses. There is however a market failure in that whilst low cost techniques that offer multiple benefits exist, they are not widely implemented, and flooding problems are increasing. With a cross border approach we can take the best of these differing approaches and skills and develop new hybrid approaches that improve the coordination between strategy and ground-based actions.
The Workshops and field visits at the partner meetings have provided an insight into the issues being experienced and the intervention measures that are being considered at different locations. This has provided the opportunity to explore how these might be applied to individual partner investments, and provide alternatives to the measures that were previously being considered.
Triple C projects in Somerset won the 2018 UK Rivers Prize. The projects also won the catchment scale project prize. The prize resulted in a lot of publicity both locally and Nationally. Soil management continues to be an important part of the project with over 33 soil structural surveys and management reports carried out so far. So far the project has had 13 workshops covering topics such as soil management, subsoiling and cover cropping with farmers scoring the events as excellent on feedback questionnaires. Staff have also attended 53 other events to network and promote the project with Stakeholders.
DWT held 5 landowner workshops and 2 stakeholder events. To date, DWT have created 56 ha of new wet grassland habitat, and restored 227 ha of existing Culm grassland, providing an additional 60,000m³ water storage achieved.
In Flanders, the collaboration between partners has resulted in a series of demo/trial fields which has ensured an awakening of interest among farmers and makes the implementation of ECM more accessible for farmers and landowners. In addition, the sediment model was also finalized and the first model results were discussed with project partners. The model indicates the most critical erosion prone points in the projects focus areas.
PCG and PCM initiated four network groups, where results of research on ECM are presented and discussed, and elaborated 3 demo plots where cultivation practices are evaluated in terms of run off and sediment loss. So far this has resulted in the installation of new ECM and farmers changing their cultivation techniques.
All farmers with high and very high erosion sensitive fields were contacted and given advice by INAGRO about adapted cultivation techniques. One leaky pond is already installed and will be evaluated. Technical plans are made for the adaptation of 2 other leaky ponds in the catchment.
13 new weirs have been installed by WBD / ZLTO, that both prevent flooding and help water conservation. Prov Antwerp /ABC Eco removed one big weir on the watercourse, and created one meander.