Additional national and regional funding to combat drought
For the third year in a row, we are faced with extremely dry weather. The Netherlands needs to adapt to the consequences of climate change and especially to prolonged periods of drought and low river water levels. For that reason, regional governments and the national government are collectively investing in innovative, new solutions to boost our country’s resilience to water shortages. On the initiative of the Delta Programme Commissioner and regional administrators, the Delta Programme partners have elaborated a set of measures over the past few weeks, which are aimed at boosting the future options for securing freshwater availability. The measures have prompted an appeal for releasing another 100 million euros from the Delta Fund. On 4 June, Minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen responded positively to this appeal in a memorandum to the House of Representatives. This means that a sum of more than 800 million euros will be available.
This additional impetus will enable the realisation of a more comprehensive set of measures to boost the Netherlands’ resilience against drought and water shortages. The Netherlands can thus continue to adapt to the consequences of climate change, prolonged periods of drought, and low river water levels. All in all, some 800 million euros will be available for essential adaptations, such as improving the Krimpenerwaard transfer and reducing external salinisation near the IJsselmeer Closure Dam. The money will also be used to fund innovative projects such as experiments involving wet cultivation on wet grounds, improving the soil structure of clay grounds, and exploring the cultivation of salt-tolerant crops in the northern Netherlands.
With the Delta Plan on Freshwater Supply and the Delta Plan on Spatial Adaptation, the Netherlands is committing to exploring measures to combat waterlogging, heat, and drought. The urgency of working on freshwater availability is increasing as a result of the impact of a changing climate. The additional investment enables us actually to boost our resilience against drought and water shortages. Such investment is crucial, especially in these times, in order to boost economic recovery and sustainable economic development.