The Delta Programme and updated flood risk management policies in the Netherlands

J. Van Alphen
2015 Journal of Flood Risk Management  
The Delta Programme develops strategies that are aimed at protecting the Netherlands against flooding, while anticipating climate change. The programme was launched in 2010 and it is aimed at avoiding a disastrous flood, rather than responding to it after the event. This requires a multigovernmental approach, strategies dealing with uncertainty and adequate institutional arrangements to guarantee future flood-proof implementation. The Delta Programme will result in updated standards for flood
more » ... otection, a policy framework regarding flood-proof urban (re)development and efforts to improve disaster management. The programme will include the necessary measures for the short term (maintenance and improvement of flood defences and an "aging infrastructure"), framing these measures into the long-term perspective of socio-economic developments and climate change. The multifunctional design of these measures has been stimulated, since this increases societal "added value" (regarding nature, recreation or urban development) and enhances their acceptance. Within the Delta Programme one of the largest challenges is dealing with uncertainties about the future climate, population, economy and society. The Delta Programme tries to tackle uncertainty by an adaptive way of planning i.e. maximizing flexibility, keeping options open and avoiding "lock in". The Delta Commissioner directs this multi-governmental process of policy development and implementation, monitors progress, reports to Parliament every year in September and takes the necessary steps when problems arise. From 2020 onwards, a Delta Fund of about 1 billion euros per year will provide stability in financial resources, reducing dependency on economic developments and securing continuous political attention. The new Delta Act forms the legal basis for the implementation of the programme, the responsibilities of the Commissioner and the Delta Fund.
doi:10.1111/jfr3.12183 fatcat:qbimfjrdafgw5n67t22ubfh65y