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Water and River Management in The Netherlands

The Water Resources and River Management course (300-level) took a day long field trip to exotic… South Holland! Here students were able to examine a variety of ways in which densely populated deltas confront issues related to water management and flooding, from a Dutch perspective.

Field trip subthemes

Field trip subthemes included: linkages between agriculture and water (mis)management, including its impact on ground subsidence and increased flood risk, the connection between different sedimentological units and deltaic hydrology, landscape evolution, governance and management of water resources, and sustainable urban and agricultural water supplies in the context of climate change and sea level rise.

Human and climate change impacts

The range of sites extended along a time-space continuum, from the historic polders of Dijkland (Delfland) that have been impacted by humans since the late Iron Age, historic and modern changes to the Rhine River, the massive Maeslantkering storm surge barrier constructed after the devastating 1953 flood, and the dense greenhouse agricultural zone along the coastal dunes, which is increasingly threatened by climate change and rising sea levels. While the stops are effectively within LUC’s ‘backyard’, they are internationally acclaimed in the field of water/flood management and enable students to explicitly link local observations with critical global environmental change issues.

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