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Water boards: Next week's rain is not going to solve drought

2019-08-09T15:04:02.329Z

The showers of next week are not going to solve the drought in the east of the country, the water boards Rhine and IJssel and Vallei and Veluwe tell NU.nl. The precipitation deficit is too large for that, says Weerplaza. In some places that has risen to more than 250 millimeters.



The showers of next week are not going to solve the drought in the east of the country, the water boards Rhine and IJssel and Vallei and Veluwe tell NU.nl. The precipitation deficit is too large for that, says Weerplaza. In some places that has risen to more than 250 millimeters.

The lowered water level in the surface water will, however, be supplemented by the precipitation, Tanja Klip-Martin, dike grave of the Vallei and Veluwe water board, expects. "But to replenish the groundwater it needs to rain much longer. Maybe months in a row."

Jan Polman, drought coordinator at the Rijn and IJssel Water Board, agrees. "We need weeks or months of rain to restore the system."

Polman mentions the rain that fell in the Achterhoek last week as an example. "There is nothing left of it now and it is still very dry."

"Drought in the east will not get any worse"

Weerplaza expects 20 to 30 millimeters of rain in the east of the country for the next nine days. "This is of course an estimate, so it can happen that 50 millimeters can fall locally, but this can also be 15", says a spokesperson. Last year about 15 to 20 millimeters of rain fell there in the same period.

There is no recovery yet, Weerplaza explains. "The sun will shine often and the temperatures are still high, causing a lot of precipitation to evaporate." Polman also mentions this. "If it is cooler, there is less evaporation. That ensures stabilization, but not lighting."

According to Weerplaza, nature may be able to recover in the autumn. "We have to wait for gloomy days, with less sun and more rainfall."

'Measures are needed to deal with drought'

In order to cope better with drought in the future, something must change drastically, Klip-Martin believes. "We cannot continue with what we have always done. We really have to take action."

Klip-Martin thinks it would be good to lay out areas of land where water is retained with, among other things, weirs. "It could well be that there is occasional flooding there in the winter, but that cannot be prevented."

"Change mowing policy around ditches"

In addition, the mowing policy around ditches must change, something the Vallei and Veluwe water board is already doing. "Mowing is now aimed at draining water. We are removing as much grass as possible so that the water in the more than 330,000 kilometers of ditches can flow away as quickly as possible. We are now mowing only 20 percent. That extra green provides resistance and holds water. "

Klip-Martin advocates "climate coats" around nature reserves such as the Veluwe. These are areas around the nature reserve where water is retained. These 'mantles' can ensure that areas such as the Veluwe stay wetter during dry periods.

"Whether the Netherlands can adapt? I think so", Klip-Martin is convinced. "But then we really have to do something. We are so smart with water in our country that we can."

Source: nunl

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