AMICE: Adaptation of the Meuse to the Impacts of Climate Evolutions
The Meuse is a transnational, navigable river, one of the largest in the North Western Europe, with a catchment basin incorporating five Member States. Its discharge fluctuates considerably with the seasons: in the winter of 1993 it reached 3100 m³ per second at the Dutch/Walloon border where normally it is only 10-40 m³ per second in summer. As a rain-fed river, the Meuse has no glacier and little groundwater storage capacity to cope with precipitation variability. This puts its economic activity, ecological status and priceless cultural heritage at risk.
The project is a unifying force in the Meuse basin, which stretches 950 km from the Langres plateau to Rotterdam. The 17 partner organisations (six river basin managers, six universities and research centres, three public administrations, and an NGO crisis centre) in the river catchment are all working on building a single overall strategy which requires reviewing, testing and quantifying. The partners are working towards a flood-proof, drought-proof understanding of how the Meuse will respond in the future to extreme water events. The International Meuse Commission is hosting the partner meetings.
The recently completed report on flood crisis management is the first ever comparison of crisis organisations and tools in the Meuse basin – fundamental for any timely, effective response to the challenges facing river management authorities and planners up and downstream.
Flooding has massive economic implication and causes huge damage to industry and severe disruption to infrastructures. The control of low waters is essential in the Meuse to guarantee energy production, with nuclear power stations along in Chooz (France) and Tihange (Belgium). Transport services, sustainable agriculture and the provision of drinking water (for 6 million people) all depend on stable water levels.
The AMICE project aims to minimise the economic, social and ecological impacts of climate change for densely populated and built-up floodplains, which – though it may not seem like it – are some of the most vulnerable areas in Europe, at risk from storms, intense rainfall and flash floods. Failure to respond is likely to bring about a reduction in external investment and depopulation. The project is expected to bring positive change for local populations.
Ms. Martine Lejeune, RIOU asbl
Ms. Maïté Fournier, EPAMA
News And Events
Consultations and seventh meeting of Dniestr project, Chisinau, 9-10 July 2013
Fourth Workshop on Adaptation to Climate Change in Transboundary Basins (Geneva, 25–26 June 2013)
Final workshop on Flood Risk Management planning and Climate Change assessment in the Sava River Basin, Zagreb, 5-6 June 2013.
Workshop on Flood Communication in the Dniester River Basin May 27-28, 2013 Lviv, Ukraine
Workshop on climate change adaptation in the Neman river basin. Vilnius, Lithuania, 16 May 2013
Workshop and expert meetingRiver basin management and climate change adaptation in the Neman river basin. Minsk, Republic of Belarus, 19 March 2013
First meeting of the global network of basins working on adaptation to climate change and third meeting of the core group of pilot projects (Geneva, 20 - 21 February 2013)