Delta Decision on the Rhine-Meuse Delta

The Rhine-Meuse delta is the transition area between the rivers and the sea: the area of the major rivers, Rhine Estuary-Drechtsteden, and the Southwest Delta. Flood risk management in the Rhine-Meuse Delta is based on four elements: the sandy coastal base, dykes, storm surge barriers, and sufficient room for the rivers. This turns out to be a sound basis for the future as well. Sophisticated, customised spatial planning and adaptive delta management will enable the issues to be tackled properly and in good time.

Rhine-Meuse Delta Decision

The distribution of water from the Rhine across the Waal, Lower Rhine-Lek and IJssel is of great importance to the flood risk management of the region. An element in the proposed Delta Decision on the Rhine-Meuse delta is, therefore, that existing agreements on the discharge distribution remain in place until 2050. The option of adjusting the discharge distribution will remain open for the period after 2050. The proposed Delta Decision also stipulates that the Grevelingen will not be used for river water storage.

The Delta Programme proposes not to close off the Nieuwe Waterweg with a dam, nor to build any new flood defences in the river estuaries. Rather, the proposal is to build a new closeable open storm surge barrier after 2070, when the Maeslant barrier is due to be replaced. The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management is exploring how the Maeslant barrier can be used more efficiently in the purview of flood protection until 2070.