Belgium Belgium Belgium Belgium

Salt intrusion Belgium


Coastal aquifers will be affected by an increase of salt intrusion under sea level rise. Salt intrusion will also increase through the Scheldt estuary.  Changes of salinity of fresh water reserves may damage food production in the polders near the coast (1).

Many studies have been carried out on (future) salt intrusion in the Netherlands. A lot of this information also holds for the low-lying Flemish coastal zone.

Salt water intrusion due to sea-level rise is mostly a very slow process that may take several centuries to reach equilibrium (2). Even small rates of groundwater pumping from coastal aquifers are expected to lead to stronger salinization of the groundwater than sea-level rise during the 21st century (3).


The references below are cited in full in a separate map 'References'. Please click here if you are looking for the full references for Belgium.

  1. d’Ieteren et al. (2003)
  2. Webb and Howard (2011), in: IPCC (2014)
  3. Ferguson and Gleeson (2012); Loaiciga et al. (2012), both in: IPCC (2014)

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