Teaming up with China in the field of water management

Published: 2 June 2015

Last week, the Nanjing Hydraulics Research Institute (China) and Deltares, Delft University of Technology, UNESCO-IHE and Rijkswaterstaat signed a joint declaration stating that they wished to further intensify their collaboration. The parties can learn a lot from each other in many fields, including water management. At present, Deltares is engaged in a range of projects with China relating to dike strength, dike monitoring, and flood risk management.

At a round table conference where the Netherlands was represented by Rijkswaterstaat, Deltares, Delft University of Technology and UNESCO-IHE, agreements were made with the Chinese Ministry of Water Resources about how to establish ongoing and mutual exchanges of knowledge. A partnership was also established with the prestigious Nanjing Hydraulics Research Institute (NHRI).

Dutch technologies to be scaled up in China

The Netherlands can pick up a lot of experience in China in the field of water management because the dikes there are much higher and longer. In this way, Dutch innovative technologies can be scaled up. For example, since 2012, sensor technologies from the Netherlands have been used in the dikes adjoining the 5,500-kilometre-long Yellow River. All the data are being analysed using the Dike Analysis Module (DAM) from Deltares.

DAM workshop in China

Analysis of Xinyi river

Frans van den Berg (a Deltares dike expert) spent the last two weeks visiting the Huaihe River Commission (HRC) with a delegation from Rijkswaterstaat. The aim was to evaluate the ongoing project, and to exchange knowledge and explore options for joint research in the field of dike technology. This will involve the use of a Dike Analysis Module (DAM) for the Xinyi River almost 400 km to the north of Shanghai. The dikes of the Xinyi River protect more than 6 million people. During the first analysis, a successful pilot project was conducted on a section of approximately 100 km on the basis of only sparse information. A number of Chinese people will be coming to the Netherlands in September for a DAM course and to work on the further elaboration of the pilot project. Next year, a link will be established with the Flood Early Warning System (FEWS).