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The Flemish coast: life is beautiful!
Herrier, J.-L.; Van Nieuwenhuyse, H. (2005). The Flemish coast: life is beautiful!, in: Herrier, J.-L. et al. (Ed.) Proceedings 'Dunes and Estuaries 2005': International Conference on nature restoration practices in European coastal habitats, Koksijde, Belgium 19-23 September 2005. VLIZ Special Publication, 19: pp. 13-26
In: Herrier, J.-L. et al. (Ed.) (2005). Proceedings 'Dunes and Estuaries 2005': International Conference on nature restoration practices in European coastal habitats, Koksijde, Belgium 19-23 September 2005. VLIZ Special Publication, 19. Vlaams Instituut voor de Zee (VLIZ): Oostende. XIV, 685 pp., more
In: VLIZ Special Publication. Vlaams Instituut voor de Zee (VLIZ): Oostende. ISSN 1377-0950, more

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Document type: Conference paper

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  • Herrier, J.-L., more
  • Van Nieuwenhuyse, H., more

Abstract
    Along the quite short Belgian coastline (65km), six Natura 2000 sites have been delimited on land and one at sea. This probably explains why from the 20 Life nature projects that up to now have been or are being executed in the Flemish region no less than four are focused on coastal areas. This paper offers a review of those four coastal Life nature projects and their achievements. The Life nature project ‘ICCI’ (1997-2001) aimed at re-establishing ecological relations between sea and land, between sandy beaches, mudflats, salt marshes and coastal dunes and between coastal dunes and polders from De Panne to Nieuwpoort and stimulating the policy of purchase of coastal dunes by the Flemish region. Its successor, ‘FEYDRA’ (2002-2005), has as main goal, the restoration of annex 2 - habitats in several coastal dune sites in Koksijde and Nieuwpoort. ‘Salt meadows at the Flemish coast’ (1999-2003) and its sequel, ‘The Uitkerkse Polder’ (2003-2008), strive for the maintenance or restoration of polder meadows with a rich topography by land purchase and an appropriate nature management. The Life nature projects ‘ICCI’ and ‘Salt meadows at the Flemish coast’ have achieved complete realisation of their objectives. Both other Life projects that are mentioned above are still being executed, but the prospects look good. Essential elements in this success have been a thorough scientific preparation and a sustained action for public support. The Life nature projects in the coastal zone have not only accomplished their initial program, but also had a favourable influence on the conservation policy of the Flemish government for the coastal zone; prospected the possibilities for a federal conservation policy in the marine environment and stimulated dialogue between conservationists on the one hand, local authorities and drinking water supply companies on the other hand.

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