The development of the national surface water renaturalisation program is one of the activities included in the update of water management plans (aPGW).
Renaturalisation should be understood as activities contributing to the restoration of watercourses and water reservoirs, more or less human-transformed, to a near-natural state. The main objective of the program is to propose priority areas, along with the actions assigned to them, which should be implemented in the first place, taking into account environmental and economic conditions. This action will be analyzed in order to be taken into account during the IIAPGW in river basin districts in 2021.
The National State Water Management of the Polish State Commission entrusted the development of the program to Multiconsult Polska, whose team of experts, taking into account their own practical and theoretical experience in the field of water renaturization (rivers, lakes, transitional and coastal waters), proposed a multidimensional analysis of the possibilities and methods for conducting water renaturation in Poland. The developed approach ensures compliance with the requirements set out in the Water Framework Directive regarding the achievement by the EU Member States of the objective of at least good water status.
The development of the renaturalisation program will be based on the analysis of the possibilities and necessity to take remedial measures, taking into account the degree of water transformation and the ability of aquatic ecosystems to regenerate themselves.
Surface water re-naturalisation is an example of the possibility of increasing natural retention - implemented through measures to protect water resources by restoring or maintaining natural ecosystems. Such actions significantly contribute to reducing losses suffered by the society, environment and economy of the country as a result of climate change, constituting one of the possibilities of adaptation to climate change.
Renaturalisation of surface waters includes: improvement of channel and valley retention, normalization of water relations in catchments, renaturalization of wetlands and peat bogs, restoration of continuity and hydromorphological diversity of watercourses and lakes. These types of activities improve the resilience, i.e. the adaptation of ecosystems and the continuity of the ecosystem services they provide. Water restoration reduces flood risk, mitigates drought effects, reduces necessary maintenance costs and creates socially attractive places.
During the preparation of the surface water renaturalisation program, discussion meetings with experts are planned to help develop its final form. Completion of work on the program is planned for the first quarter of 2020.