Save the town and drown the landscape – adaptive urban water management

19:00 Tuesday 28 May




Sara Bergek (Sweden) 1; Leonard Sandin (Sweden) 1; Gerda Kinell (Sweden) 2; Måns Enander (Sweden) 3; Samuel Karlström (Sweden) 4

1 - Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences; 2 - County Administrative Board of Västra Götaland; 3 - County Administrative Board of Västmanland; 4 - County Administrative Board of Stockholm

Projections of future climate change indicate heavier rainfalls and increased risk of flooding in Sweden. The objective of this project is to develop a method to locate appropriate areas where overflow can be channeled, to minimize flood risks and the effect on freshwater ecosystem services and at the same time contributing to the achievement of good water quality. The work is based on case studies of two rivers in southern Sweden that both flow into Lake Mälaren which is the main drinking water reservoir for the greater Stockholm area and more than two million people.

Suitable overflow areas was identified by using geographical information (e.g. GIS-layer) based on the risk for contamination and minimizing the effect on ecosystem services. The overflow areas are identified by using landscape planning, investigating possible new flooding areas such as low lying areas, former wetlands and recreation areas. In addition, vulnerable objects and areas have been identified (e.g. towns, polluted land, infrastructure) and combined in analysis. The landscape planning was tested in the open web-based GIS-tool accessible in Sweden.

Results show that several contaminated areas within the drainage basins will be flooded and that there will be a negative effect on water quality and ecosystem services. Especially biodiversity, drinking water and habitat. In addition, existing plans for urban development are within areas of high flood risk. In order to successfully implement the findings of this project, involvement of stakeholders is crucial and social, legal, economic as well as biological aspects have to be considered.

This work is a part of the EU funded Life IP Rich Waters project and will support the integration of approaches and requirements of the Water Framework Directive.