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The restoration of mudflats, salt marshes and dunes on the eastern bank of the Yzer-rivermouth, Nieuwpoort
Deboeuf, C.; Herrier, J.-L. (2002). The restoration of mudflats, salt marshes and dunes on the eastern bank of the Yzer-rivermouth, Nieuwpoort, in: Veloso Gomes, F. et al. (Ed.) Littoral 2002: 6th International Symposium Posters: a multi-disciplinary Symposium on Coastal Zone Research, Management and Planning, Porto, 22-26 September 2002: volume 3. pp. 201-202
In: Veloso Gomes, F. et al. (Ed.) (2002). Littoral 2002: 6th International Symposium Posters: a multi-disciplinary Symposium on Coastal Zone Research, Management and Planning, Porto, 22-26 September 2002: volume 3. EUROCOAST/EUCC: Porto. ISBN 972-8558-09-0. XIV, 480 pp., more

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Document types: Conference paper; Poster

Keywords
    Dunes; Mud flats; Restoration; Salt marshes; ANE, Belgium, IJzer R., Nieuwpoort [Marine Regions]; Marine; Brackish water

Authors  Top 
  • Deboeuf, C.
  • Herrier, J.-L., more

Abstract
    Along the 65 kilometer long Belgian coast, the Yzer is the only river which flows into the North Sea. The western bank of the Yzer-rivermouth in Nieuwpoort has been consolidated by a dike since medieval time, but the eastern bank kept its natural character until the 20th century. The eastern bank of the Yzer-rivermouth consisted of a sandy beach, mudflats, salt marshes and coastal dunes. In the years 1950 and 1970 a military harbour was built and a huge quantity of dredging-sludge was dumped upon this estuarine site. Although severely degraded, the eastern bank of the Yzer-rivermouth was later designated as part of a special protection zone in execution of the European "Bird-Directive" 791409lEEC and proposed as part of a candidate Special Area for Conservation in the frame of the European "Habitat-directive" 92/43/EEC. A plan for the restoration of the mudflats, salt marshes and dunes along the Yzer-rivermouth has been drawn in 1996 by the University of Ghent on request of the Nature Division of the Ministry of the Flemish Community. After the transfer of propriety of the former naval basis from the Ministry of Defence to the Flemish Region in 1998, this nature-restoration plan was put into execution by the Nature Division. During the winter 1999-2000 the buildings and concrete roads of the former naval basis were demolished. In the winter 2000-2001 the quays and docks of the tidal harbour and the slipway were dismantled: eight jetties consisting of wooden and concrete stakes and gangways, 1,3 kilometer of bank revetment in bluestone and sheet piles, and 178.000 m3 of soil were removed, as part of the LIFE nature - project "Integral Coastal Conservation Initiative" (ICCI). In january 2001 the final phase of the nature-restoration works has started: the removal of 250.000 m3 of soil from the former dredging sludge dump. This last phase of the works should take nine months. The removal of the former military harbour and dredging sludge dump allows the restoration of about 50 hectares of tidal habitats and coastal dunes and costs in total approximately 4.500.000 Euro. The further natural evolution of the site is the object of a scientific monitoring project carried out by a multidisciplinary team.

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