Protecting the heart of Europe from flooding by Jan De Nul

Extreme weather conditions can cause rivers to reach dangerously high levels and even to flood.

That’s why the Flemish government started the Sigma plan in 1977 to protect Flanders against flooding of the Scheldt and its tributaries.

By creating higher dykes and a chain of natural flooding areas, the river land will be able to buffer the extra water.

By 2030, about 260 kilometres of river land will be ready to withstand the impact of climate change. An ambitious project, with Jan De Nul as one of the main contributors.

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The Sigma plan creates ecologically valuable flood plains protected by river dykes.

But these dykes also need protection, for example by ecologically valuable river banks.

To make this happen, the partnership for innovative collaboration Blue Cluster initiated the project Bankbusters.

The aim of the project is to provide the right conditions at the foot of the dyke for vegetation to grow, making the river banks resistant to erosion.

They will achieve that goal by using dredged sediments and biobased and biodegradable materials to create structures in the marine environment.

As a long-term partner of the Blue Cluster, Jan De Nul has participated in several milestone projects.

Photo: Jan De Nul