Using upstream private land to reduce flood risk

Landowner – can you spare a field?

Providing space for controlled flooding of fields more effectively controls the amount, the speed, and the intensity of floods than technical/engineering measures alone can do.

Through 4 years of collaborative work, our Action has shown how flooding private land upstream complements and improves flood risk management for downstream cities and infrastructure. Nature-based flood risk management, focusing on preventing flood risks from arising, vastly improves the efficiency of Classic flood risk management by focusing on intervening at the source of the floods, rather than where their consequences occur.

Research shows that the effectiveness of Nature-based flood risk management strongly depends on the quality of the appropriate policy processes and in particular, on the stakeholders’ willingness to engage in the process. Indeed, this takes time and sincere effort, and in particular demands for mastering specially adapted policy tools. Further, conditions must be attractive for private landowners – both financial and societal.

We learned how need for risk mitigation processes must be inclusive and engage stakeholders on a broad basis. That relational, and often, site-specific qualities are crucial for the efficiency of the process, and that this demands long-term involvement and continuous evaluation.

Further, that policies generally are too problem-oriented rather than having a focus upon developing processes for planning, involving, developing, and implementing sustainable solutions. In order to be sustainable, in addition to the technical, they also have to include the environmental and societal/relational. Real sustainable solutions must be built upon the willing support and partnership of all parties, upstream as well as downstream.

Learn more about our exciting findings, and get involved in the new international network that will be launched, by attending the online conference:

Towards Spatial Flood Risk management! Online 27th of January, 2022 from 13:00-17:00 (CET).

Join the discussion! Participation is free. Please enter your full name while connecting. Please see the conference’s agenda to find out more.

LAND4FLOOD established a large and reliable network and it has been supported by the European COST funding programme (European Cooperation in Science and Technology, Now the COST Action comes to an end, but LAND4FLOOD will continue! At the end of this meeting an independent academic network on LAND4FLOOD shall be launched.