Natural small water retention measures

“Small retention” is an adaptive measure as it serves to adjust to extreme climate variability; specifically, it helps retain water in the land during wet periods and slows down flood waves during flood periods.

This demonstration project deals with small water retention to improve the water holding potential of landscapes, and to increase resilience against the effects of climate change. Such measures include small dikes and polders, the restoration of wetlands, and changes in forestry and agricultural practices.

The main output will be technical guidelines for individuals, civil society and policy-makers on how to plan and construct different types of small water retention measures that lower flood risk and store water for dry periods.

Small retention is often considered only as a flood protection measure; however, floodwater stored by small retention dikes and polders is also an important source of water for ecosystems, agriculture and forestry during drought in river basins.

Watch our video about Small water retention measures: