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Resilient soil and water resources,
understanding the water beneath your feet.


SalFar cooperates with TopSoil

08 May 2019 - Published by Jens Uvijn

At the Flemish level, the projects SalFar and TopSoil have teamed up and all partners have agreed to jointly address the issue of water management in the Flemish coastal area.

Topsoil is an INTERREG North Sea Region project that aims to improve the resilience of soil and water resources. The focus of the Topsoil project is the impact of climate change on the topsoil and the implementation of strategies to address current and future water challenges at the topsoil.

One such climate challenge is salinization, a process exacerbated by sea-level rise and changes in precipitation patterns (more dry periods). The Flemish partner in Topsoil, the Flanders Environment Agency (VMM), has mapped the salinity of the coastal phreatic aquifer via a time-domain airborne electromagnetic system. A helicopter equipped with a hoop (see photo in the top) emits an electromagnetic pulse and measures soil resistivity. With the aid of a lithological model, this resistivity will be converted into a 3D image of fresh and salt groundwater. The results of the airborne survey will be used to investigate the potential to improve the freshwater availability in the western polder area. On the other hand, however, the model can equally be used to detect the regions where there is little potential to tackle salinization via freshwater strategies. For these areas, the SalFar project will explore the potential of the strategy ‘saline farming’ for climate adaptation.