Preferred strategy for the Wadden area

A preferred strategy has been drawn up for flood risk management in the Wadden area in the context of the Delta Decision for Flood Risk Management and the Sand Decision. The implementation of this strategy has taken shape in the form of measures that match the nature goals for the Wadden area as closely as possible.

Flood risk management

The preferred strategy for the Wadden area focuses on flood risk management. This breaks down into two components: the maximum preservation of the current buffering effect of the islands and the intertidal zone, and further strengthening of the flood defences. The sandy coastal system is also important, as are pilot projects, monitoring and knowledge development.

The councils of the islands agreed in early 2023 to a follow-up to the pilot project Integrated Flood Risk Management Strategy for the Wadden Islands to establish a multi-layer strategy for flood risk management for each island involving smart combinations for multiple space use on both the North Sea coast and the Wadden Sea coasts.

Sea Level Rise Knowledge Programme (KPZSS)

The Sea Level Rise Knowledge Programme focuses on the consequences of sea level rise, and is exploring the extent to which island dunes can follow that rise in natural ways. The programme is also looking at the number of sand nourishment operations needed in the future and the impact of changes in the Wadden Sea on both land use behind the dikes and flood defences on the mainland and Wadden Islands. The Wadden Area Delta Programme will include the results of this study in the periodical evaluation of the preferred strategy.


The focus is on innovative dike upgrades with added value for society. There will be integrated flood risk management strategies in conjunction with decisions about coastal management in the long term.