Zeeland farmers manage their own water level

For agricultural entrepreneurs in Zealand, the last three dry summers have in many cases been catastrophic for fruit and vegetable yields. A large number of peasants joined the forces and started the de Waterhauriz Wolceran Foundation. In addition to retaining freshwater in basins and groundwater storage, farmers also separate freshwater and saltwater runoff.

Seven farmers in the triangle of Xeroskerke, Ostkabel and Vrovenbolder want to jointly manage and increase the supply of fresh water in the region. Field vegetable farmer Werner Lovers was one of the participants.

‘Here in Zeeland we have to make fresh water fall from the sky. In the winter we often have enough, but then we have no crops. In the summer we have crops, but then there is a shortage of rainwater. Therefore it is necessary to store water above and below the ground for dry periods. ‘

Nature conservation

De Waterhouse does not want to fill the landscape with basins to collect rainwater. According to Louvers, there are still solutions. ‘One of the ways to prevent drought in the ground is to keep the surface water level as high as possible. In addition, we would like to make more use of the natural freshwater bubbles that have arisen on the creek ridges. By tying the weeds, we want to prevent the sweet grooves from entering the fresh and unusable salt water. ‘

According to Werner Lovers, close consultation with the Water Board is the basis for good water management. ‘We point out what our desires are. It is sometimes out of what the Water Board will do based on the water level. But if there is agreement with all users behind a particular vet, it is possible to consult with the water board. So we get a new policy for our area. But if the water board wants the level to drop again due to circumstances, it is true that the water level is falling again. By uniting us in the basement, there are more and more great suggestions on water management, but in the end we did not decide. ‘

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