Engineering Earth pp 1465-1480 | Cite as

The Impacts of Megahydraulic Engineering Projects from a Dutch Perspective

  • Guus J. Borger
  • Sjoerd J. Kluiving
  • Adriaan M.J. De Kraker


This chapter reviews the building of two megahydraulic engineering projects in Holland: the Zuiderzee Project and the Delta Project. The initial objectives of these megastructures were safety and reducing the salt gradient and land reclamation in order to guarantee food supply. Only the Delta Project focused on the first objective. Although the initial objectives were met, the perception of the initial objectives shifted during the 1970s, rendering nature building, ecology, fresh water supply, urbanization and recreation as being important as well. As a result of this promotion, megahydraulic engineering projects in the Netherlands have undergone similar changes. While the vast reclaimed areas in the Zuiderzee area and the abandoned reclamation of the Markermeer already anticipated the need for nature building, ecology, urbanization and fresh water supply, this was not the case in the Delta area. Here only the Eastern Scheldt Storm Surge Barrier anticipated the shift in perception, but some ecological changes were not anticipated until recently.


Storm Surge Initial Objective Tidal Inlet Tectonic Subsidence Salt Gradient 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Guus J. Borger
    • 1
  • Sjoerd J. Kluiving
    • 1
  • Adriaan M.J. De Kraker
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Earth and Life Sciences, Institute for Geo and BioarchaeologyVU University of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Institute for Geo and BioarchaeologyVU University of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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