Subsidence and changing climate have major impact on the Dutch delta and the Dutch dike system. They led in 2014 to the start of the new Delta Plan: by 2050, the Netherlands must be climate-proof, by ensuring that the dikes can be adapted to climate conditions. This is why building, reinforcing and maintaining the networks of dikes is a never-ending task. Dutch Dikes presents an overview of the dikes in their current state, as well as it offers a look towards the future.
What would the Netherlands be without dikes? One thing is certain: it would not exist in its current form. Knowledge and practice about building and maintaining dikes together in one overview is the main result of the research. This knowledge contributes to the Delta Plan and has got a couple of firsts: the dike map, showing the location of the Dutch Dikes and their role in the network, flood defence or not. From winter dikes to summer dikes, from sea dikes to waterline dikes, and from dreamers to guardians: all types of dikes are brought together in a unique, systematic genealogy. With 43 different dike types and 9 different dike systems the Netherlands has got the most elaborate and diverse dikes network in the world.