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Deltares Green Adaptation Brochure11 2010



A Deltares brochure on how Green, Ecosystem based Adaptation approaches can be cost-effective tools to adapt to climate change in developing countries.

A Deltares brochure on how Green, Ecosystem based Adaptation approaches can be cost-effective tools to adapt to climate change in developing countries.



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    Deltares Green Adaptation Brochure11 2010 Deltares Green Adaptation Brochure11 2010 Document Transcript

    • Sea level rise, water availability, food scarcity, increasing population and subsidence lead to increasing demands onspace in delta areas and require new approaches concerning water management. Healthy ecosystems and goodwaterquality provide the foundation for economic activities and guarantee a good quality of living. Engineeringsolutions are often developed from a single perspective, such as enhancing safety, increasing land area or stimulationof economic development. These type of solutions increase demands for limited space and may aggravate conflictsbetween functions. Innovative Green Adaptation approaches have been developed that provide practical ecosystem-based solutions to adapt to pressures, and provide efficient use of space beyond merely compensating for impactsinduced by climate change, or applying single perspective engineering solutions.Green AdaptationEcosystem based adaptation toclimate change in developing countries Courtesy: Meteorologii Geopodarki Wodnej The Challenges Environmental and socio-economic impacts of climate speaking water management is approached from a change pose a serious threat to development and responsive, de-centralized perspective. With natural poverty reduction in developing countries. Adaptation dynamics of local water systems predominantly still is a way of reducing vulnerability, increasing resilience, intact, developing countries could be especially aided moderating the risk of climate impacts on lives and by knowledge on how to cost-effectively make use of livelihoods, and taking advantage of opportunities these ecosystem services and functions for the benefit posed by actual or expected climate change. Adaptation of safety, freshwater availability, food security and is therefore becoming an increasingly important part livelihoods in general. of the development agenda, especially in developing countries most at risk from climate change. Developing countries’ natural ecosystems are Green Adaptation as a way forward generally less anthropogenically affected in terms of coastal defense and river regulation than in highly There is an urgent need for effective knowledge developed countries. Large-scale extensive water dissemination on efficient adaptation approaches to management measures do occur, but generally these pressures, increasing multi-functional use of available space. Ecosystem-based or ‘Green’ approaches can contribute to adaptation strategies through the following: • Maintaining and restoring natural ecosystems and the goods and services they provide • Protecting and enhancing vital ecosystem services, such as water flows and water quality • Maintaining coastal barriers and natural Courtesy: zeeinzicht.nl mechanisms of flood control and pollution reduction • Reducing land and water degradation by actively preventing, and controlling, the spread of invasive alien species
    • With your help we can make Green Adaptation common practice! courtesy www.stroming.nl • Managing, restoring and strengthening habitats that maintain nursery, feeding, and breeding grounds for fisheries, wildlife, and other species on which human populations depend • Providing reservoirs for wild relatives of crops to increase genetic diversity and resilience. Restoring natural dynamics and morphology in river basins increases Governments and development agencies have safety and natural value. recognized this and are beginning to treat adaptation to climate change not as a standalone effort, but rather as Room for the River an issue to be mainstreamed through all development Room for the River is a concept that was initiated by the Dutch and environmental policies. government and is now fully implemented in Dutch policy programs. In the national Room for the River program, rivers are given more room to overflow at a total of 39 locations. This room is created e.g. by lowering of floodplains, relocation of dikes, depoldering or theGreen Coast – Mangrove restoration in Thailand deepening of the summer bed, and thus artificially restoring parts ofTogether with its partners WWF, IUCN and Both ENDS, Wetlands the historical appearance of the river system (meanders, wetlands).International developed a program to restore the damaged coastal These measures jointly comprise the Room for the River Program. Inecosystems such as mangroves, beach forest, coral reef and sand dunes in addition to safety, the Room for the River Program is concurrentlythe tsunami hit areas in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and Malaysia. investing in environmental quality: the rivers region is made more healthy, attractive and appealing. The region will offer more room toGreen Coast adopts a unique approach: restoration & management of nature and recreation.coastal ecosystems through a community-led approach, to improvebiodiversity and livelihoods of coastal communities.Healthy coastal ecosystems are vital for fisheries, aquaculture and other Green Adaptation in practicesources of income for coastal populations such as eco-tourism andagriculture. They also function as buffer zones in case of extreme weather Green Adaptation concepts include ecosystem functionsevents such as storms and prevent coastal erosion and intrusion of salt in an integrated approach to adapt to climate threats.water in fresh water systems. Green Adaptation solutions therefore actively useBeing a well-tested approach in relation to climate change adaptation, ecosystem services as a cost-effective way to enhancethe Green Coast model is being promoted by Wetlands International to safety, food and freshwater security, and protectrestore mangroves along highly vulnerable tropical coastlines, for example livelihoods. Win-win solutions are created in orderin West Africa. to limit use of space while producing benefits for multiple functions, sometimes by designing hybridWith Green Coast 2, WI Thailand will restore 80 ha of mangrove forest and eco-engineering solutions. As this will combine ‘classic’25 ha of sea grass beds, expecting to benefit 4700 people from 9 villages. engineering know-how with site specific natural components and inherent natural dynamics, there is a need for multi disciplinary breakthrough thinking and acting in new alliances, that try to solve and manage the need for adaptation. Green Adaptation process Green Adaptation examples have shown that there is a need for an effective development process, leading
    • Ecodynamic Design for Room for the River –WaterInnovation in the NoordwaardThe eco-dynamic design approach has been applied by the Water Courtesy wwf.panda.orgInnovation Program by Deltares and the Dutch Government, in acase study for the Room for the Rivers program. In an area that willbe de-poldered to increase the discharge capacity of the river (PolderNoordwaard), a small area with houses will have to be protectedfrom floodwater. Instead of a traditional dike, a lower dike with wavereducing willow-plantations in front will be built. The strip of willowtrees will be 2 kilometer long and 100 meter wide and will effectuate Mekong Delta communities are involved in conservation and restoration programs.a wave reduction of 80%. In this way the dike can be lower and theenvironmental quality is increased at the same time. Vietnam –Wetland protection and environmental flows The Mekong Delta is a broad, flat plain that is fed by the Nine-Headed Dragon or Cuu Long River, as it is called in Vietnamese. The 18 million people living in the Mekong Delta depend upon the fertility of the river to produce the rice and fish that contribute 25% of the GDP of Vietnam. Hundreds of fish and bird species occur in the Mekong Delta; most of them are concentrated in the few remaining natural wetlands. Floods are part of the way of life in the Mekong delta, and flooding can be beneficial as it brings down sediments and nutrients to renew the floodplain. Traditionally the negative connotation of the word “flood” did not exist in the Delta and life was determined by the river’s movements. At the onset of the rising water season people planted rice, during the season they fished and collected wetland resources, then harvested rice during the low water season. Courtesy: Deltares Upstream of the delta, dams have been built on the mainstem in China and in the tributaries in lower basin, bringing changes to the sediment dynamics and altering flow regimes. Another 11 dams are planned for the Mekong mainstem in Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. If these dams are built, fish migrations will be blocked and theAnimation of wave reducing levee, where nature is made an integrated life-giving sediment and nutrients that nourish the delta will diminish.part of the defense system. WWF has embarked on an initiative to create the Mekong Delta Estuary Biosphere Reserve as a model for sustainable development in the delta. Coastal mangrovetowards cost-effective solutions. In this proces, there restoration and ecosystem-based livelihood improvement will be key measures inis a need for multi-disciplinary cooperation through this initiative. The intention is to develop biosphere reserves in several provinces.all phases of the project realization, based on a co- Ecosystem-based restoration of the natural hydrology and preserving and restoringoperative network between science, government, market wetlands is benefiting rare bird species, but also benefits fish populations. Workingparties and the public. In order to effectively realize with communities to improve agricultural and aquacultural practice is anotherneeded innovations in science and techniques there is focus, ensuring, for example, that shrimp and pangasius production adhere toa requirement for practical alliances between thinkers, higher environmental standards. Certification of delta fisheries, particularly clams,do-ers and managers. Solutions should be contributing under the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) will also be of benefit. Concurrently,to long-term healthy ecosystem functioning, which WWF is working with the Mekong River Commission and others to betterrequires understanding of local ecosystem functioning understand the full costs and benefits of proposed hydropower development usingand provided services. Keywords for solutions should be the concept of environmental flows, to ensure that only sustainable hydropowersustainable, adaptable/flexible, robust, dynamic and no dams are built.regret for ecosystems and society.In our view Green Adaptation is based on an integratedmulti-actor approach: Building with nature and Making use of existing networks to shareecosystem designs are realized through an integrated Green Adaptation knowledgedesign and construction process where differentdisciplines work together in realizing a most optimal To effectively disseminate and share the availablemultifunctional and sustainable design. A challenge is to knowledge in the field of Green Adaptation, weintegrate the dynamic behavior of nature as predictable need to make optimal use of existing platformspart of the engineering process. This requires a new way such as Delta Alliance, World Estuary Alliance, butof thinking and interacting. also international NGOs. With multi-functional use of space, enabling nature AND livelihoods is possible!
    • Making use of existing platforms such as Delta Alliance, World Estuary Alliance,but also international NGOs is of vital importance for disseminating theavailable knowledge in the field of Green Adaptation The newly established Delta Alliance (DA) is an international knowledge-driven network organization with the mission of improving the resilience of the world’s deltas. DA has four network wings where activities are focused: California, Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Netherlands. International platforms like DA, World Estuary Alliance and international NGOs like WWF can play an excellent role in disseminating knowledge and stimulating developments in the field Courtesy: E. Leger of Green Adaptation. Forested swamps in LouisianaBuilding with Nature – Sand EngineThe Dutch ‘Building With Nature’ (BwN) innovation program has developed Building with Nature in Louisiana:a variety of highly promising Green Adaptation approaches, through a wetland restorationjoint consortium of commercial dredging companies, research institutes, In 2007, after hurricane Katrina a consortium of Dutch companiesconsultancies and governmental organizations. A unique concept of Building (organized through NCK, Partners for Water Program), coordinatedwith Nature is the Sand engine. A huge nourishment of 20 million m3 of sand by WL | Delft Hydraulics, worked on solutions to increase the safetywill be deposited in front of the Dutch Delfland coast, after which wind, waves against flooding in New Orleans. The area faces major loss of marshlandand sea currents will naturally disperse the sand. This will contribute to due to erosion. The approach was nature restoration in combinationthe coastal safety in the long term and additionally create areas for nature with higher safety levels, resulting in the idea of the restorationand recreation. In this approach, maintenance costs are drastically reduced of wetland vegetation as wave reducers in front of coastal barriers.compared to traditional coastal defense structures, as natural coastalprocesses are being used. The first pilot project in 2010 focuses on knowledgedevelopment in the fields of morphology, hydrodynamics and ecology.Coastal protection through ‘Building with Nature’ is making the step from Deltares and Green adaptationdefensive design methods (aimed at minimising negative effect) to designmethods aimed at maximizing the potential of the system. Deltares works within a community of national and international partners from public, private and NGO sectors to answer the most important questions that need to be solved for large-scale application of Green Courtesy: boskalis.com, zandmotor.nl Adaptation concepts. Knowledge gaps range from issues concerning design, testing and predictability of functionality, to quantification and validation of desired ecosystem services. Deltares is actively working on filling these knowledge gaps, through fieldwork and physical and numerical modeling, with the aim of creating and sharing knowledge. For more information on Green Adaptation developments at Deltares, please contact us at greenadaptation@deltares.nl PO Box 177 2600 MH Delft, The Netherlands T +31 (0)88 335 82 73 info@deltares.nl www.deltares.nl