Understanding future river systems by looking at the past: The Dijle valley
Nils Broothaers
4 March 2019, 18:00-20:00
Auditorium De Molen

Rivers and river valleys represent many ecosystem services such as biodiversity, carbon storage, groundwater storage, agriculture, water buffering and recreation. These ecosystem services can change as a response to changes in climate, land use or management strategies within the river catchment. Understanding the functioning of rivers and river valleys requires therefore insight in these landscape processes and requires a catchment-wide and integrated approach. In this talk we will use the case study of the Dijle valley to illustrate such an integrated approach. The Dijle valley underwent important changes in the last millennia as a response to changes in human impact in the catchment. We will demonstrate that the meandering Dijle river as we know it nowadays is the indirect result of human activities in the catchment and need to be considered as a cultural landscape. Moreover, we will use the insights in these past changes to make predictions for future changes in the river valley.