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Groundwater monitoring and modelling for the Scheldt estuary


In the frame of the Sigma Flood protection program in the Scheldt estuary several zones have been chosen for flood protection and nature development.
Several zones will be used for combined flood protection and nature development. Other zones will be exclusively designed for nature development.
A distinction is made between: wetlands, used for controlled flooding, in others reduced tidal influences will be allowed, again others will be completely depoldered.

Particularly in the wetlands, nature development is strongly dependent on groundwater flow. A groundwater-monitoring program of some 150 piezometers, and over 100 water samples and analysis, was designed to study the groundwater system. For three distinct zones regional and detailed groundwater models have been constructed to study the groundwater flow, and to study the possibility for steering nature development.

The regional groundwater models serve for determining the regional groundwater flow patterns and determining the steering factors of the seepage.
The detailed models are used for optimizing the hydrologic conditions for nature development (water levels, and other measures to control the hydrological conditions for nature development).

The vegetation forecasting and nature potential of different planning scenarios is elaborated by the Institute for Nature Preservation (INBO), partner in the project.

IMDC is coordinating the groundwater research, and is developing the models for two of the three areas.

Contact us

For more information about this project, contact: