Eastern European Perspective on the Environmental Aspects in Current Flood Risk Management: The Example of the Czech Republic

  • Blanka Loučková
Part of the Springer Water book series (SPWA)


New approaches to flood risk management strategies, moving away from large-scale technical solutions towards a greater involvement of natural processes, have recently been observed in some European countries. The primary purpose of this paper is to analyze this trend in the Czech Republic, an eastern European country in which engineered approaches have been heavily employed in the recent past. To assess the environmental aspects of current flood management strategies, the degree of implementation of “green” measures in relevant documents was evaluated at two levels: national legislative level and the regional implementation level. While the shift towards natural solutions in flood protection is well reflected at national level, traditional engineered approaches favouring “grey” infrastructure still prevail at regional level. The study discusses possible reasons for this gap between levels of governance and looks at the obstacles that hinder the promotion of natural measures in flood risk management.


Green Roof Flood Protection Green Infrastructure Flood Risk Management Flood Management 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The paper was prepared with the financial support of the Ministry of the Interior of the Czech Republic, grant no. VG20122015091 Integrated assessment of global change impacts on environmental security of the Czech Republic. The study was also supported by project CzechGlobe–Centre for Global Climate Change Impacts Studies, Reg. No. CZ.1.05/1.1.00/02.0073. The author would like to thank Mr. Tony Long for English style corrections.


  1. Ballesteros-Cánovas J, Sanchez-Silva M, Bodoque JM, Díez-Herrero A (2013) An integrated approach to flood risk management: a case study of Navaluenga (Central Spain). Water Resour Manage 27:3051–3069. doi: 10.1007/s11269-013-0332-1 Google Scholar
  2. Barredo JI (2009) Normalised flood losses in Europe: 1970–2006. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 9:97–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. DCLG (2009) Planning policy statement: Eco-towns. A supplement to planning policy statement 1. Department for Communities and Local Government, London. Accessed 21 Aug 2013
  4. Dixit A (2003) Floods and vulnerability: need to rethink flood management. Nat Hazards 28:155–179CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. EC (2000) Directive of the European parliament and of the council 2000/60/EC on establishing a framework for community action in the field of water policy. European Commission, BrusselsGoogle Scholar
  6. EC (2007) Directive of the European parliament and of the council 2000/60/EC on the assessment and management of flood risks. European commission, BrusselsGoogle Scholar
  7. EC (2011) Our life insurance, our natural capital: an EU biodiversity strategy to 2020. European Commission, BrusselsGoogle Scholar
  8. EEA (2012) European waters—current status and future challenges. EEA Report 9/2012. Copenhagen, p 52Google Scholar
  9. Feyen L, Dankers R, Bódis K et al (2012) Flood hazard in Europe in present and future climates. Clim Change 112:47–62. doi: 10.1029/2008JD011523 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Ford JD, Berrang-Ford L, Paterson J (2011) A systematic review of observed climate change adaptation in developed nations. Clim Change 106:327–336. doi: 10.1007/s10584-011-0045-5 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. van der Grijp NM, Olsthoorn AA, Tol RSJ, van der Werff PE (2006) Flood risk institutions and climate change in the Netherlands. In: Ruth M (ed) Smart growth and climate change: regional development, infrastructure and adaptation, 1st edn. Edward Elgar, Northampton, pp 243–268Google Scholar
  12. Hrádek M, Lacina J (2003) Destructional landforms arised from extreme events in the Desná River valley and their vegetation. Moravian Geogr Rep 11(1):2–19Google Scholar
  13. IPCC (2007) Climate change 2007: the physical science basis. Summary for policymakers. Contribution of working group I to the fourth assessment report of the intergovernmental panel on climate change. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  14. Krysanova V, Buiteveld H, Haase D et al (2008) Practices and lessons learned in coping with climatic hazards at the river-basin scale: floods and droughts. Ecol Soc. 13(2):1–32Google Scholar
  15. Kundzewicz ZW (2001) Water problems of central and eastern Europe—a region in transition. Hydrol Sci J 46(6):883–896CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Loftus AC (2011) Lodz, Poland—river restoration as a catalyst for sustainable urban development. Case study of the SWITCH project. ICLEI (Local Governments for Sustainability), Freiburg. Accessed 28 Aug 2013
  17. Merz B, Hall J, Disse M, Schumann A (2010) Fluvial flood risk management in a changing world. Nat Hazards Earth Syst Sci 10:509–527. doi: 10.5194/nhess-10-509-2010 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. MRDCR (2008) Spatial development policy (Politika územního rozvoje). Ministry for Regional Development of the Czech Republic, Prague. Accessed 10 May 2013
  19. MACR (2000) Strategy for protection against floods (Strategie ochrany před povodněmi). Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic, Prague. Accessed 10 May 2013
  20. MACR (2007) Plan for the main river basins (Plán hlavních povodí). Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic, Prague. Accessed 10 May 2013
  21. MACR, MECR (2010). Plan of Flood Protection using Technical and natural measures (Koncepce řešení problematiky ochrany před povodněmi v ČR s využitím technických a přírodě blízkých opatření). Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic and Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic, Prague. Accessed 10 May 2013
  22. Pahl-Wostl C (2007) Transitions towards adaptive management of water facing climate and global change. Water Resour Manage 21:49–62. doi: 10.1007/s11269-006-9040-4 Google Scholar
  23. Peltonen L, Juhola S, Schuster P (2010) Governance of climate change adaptation: policy review. Climate change: Impacts, costs and adaptation in the Baltic Sea region, project report. Available via BaltCICA. Accessed 30 June 2013
  24. Petz K, Minca EL, Werners SE, Leemans R (2012) Managing the current and future supply of ecosystem services in the Hungarian and Romanian Tisza river basin. Reg Environ Change 12:689–700. doi: 10.1007/s10113-012-0284-7 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Schelfaut K, Pannemans B, van der Craats I et al (2011) Bringing flood resilience into practice: the FREEMAN project. Environ Sci Policy 14:825–833. doi: 10.1016/j.envsci.2011.02.009 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Schlüter M, Hirsch D, Pahl-Wostl C (2010) Coping with change: responses of the Uzbek water management regime to socio-economic transition and global change. Environ Sci Policy 13:620–636. doi: 10.1016/j.envsci.2010.09.001 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Tierney KJ, Lindell MK, Perry RW (2001) Facing the unexpected disaster preparedness and response in the United States. Joseph Henry Press, Washington, DCGoogle Scholar
  28. Wisner B, Blaikie P, Cannon T, Davis I (2004) At risk. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  29. WMO (2006) Environmental aspects of integrated flood management. Associated programme on flood management, flood management policy series, Technical Document No.3, WMO, Geneva, p 86Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Human Dimensions of Global Change, CzechGlobe—Global Change Research CenterAcademy of Sciences of the Czech RepublicPragueCzech Republic

Personalised recommendations