Since the start of 2017, the Coastal Division has been taking part, together with six other European countries (Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK) in FAIR, the Interreg North Sea Region programme.
FAIR stands for Flood infrastructure Asset management and Investment in Renovation, adaptation and maintenance. This project aims to reduce flood risks in the countries bordering the North Sea by employing innovative solutions whereby seawalls are adapted to the rising sea levels.
These solutions need to be cost efficient, both in terms of construction and maintenance. The aim is also to exchange knowledge with the various partners in the project and see how each country deals with climate change.
Other aspects were also examined, such as the way in which different assessments and reviews of seawalls are carried out, how investments are handled (lifecycle cost, maintenance, initial investment, etc.), and which solutions have already been developed in the participating countries.
The partners consist of a mix of managers of seawall constructions and knowledge institutes. The Coastal Division took part in this programme by carrying out a study of how to extend the seawall in Middelkerke. This seawall will be extended by a projection that will help deaden the effect of the waves, taking into account the rise in sea levels. This project is a pilot project within the FAIR Programme, looking at innovative ways to deal with rising sea levels. The expected result is that the beach will evolve in the future along with the rising water level in order to achieve a constant level of protection.
Follow this link to visit the website for the FAIR project