Wetlands as biodiversity hotspots


Commencé en : 2024

Project van : Natuurpunt

Commencé en : 2024

Het project

Wetlands4Cities is a project by Natuurpunt in collaboration with Ecover, manufacturer of a range of eco-friendly cleaning and other products. The project aims to restore, enhance and maintain five urban wetlands in Flanders. Wetlands are biodiversity hotspots where thousands of vegetation and wildlife species flourish. They are important migratory stops and breeding and hibernation habitats for birds. Acting as natural sponges these natural climate buffers play a crucial role in retaining and capturing water, preventing water shortage, mitigating heat islands and reducing atmospheric carbon. In this way, the quality of life in Flanders, especially in cities, will be improved.

Site du projet



Coût du projet

Au-delà de 500.000 €


The project involves private partners as well as NGOs and governments. This project originates from a collaboration with private partner Ecover. Firstly, we work with our local Natuurpunt departments who help monitor the implementations and developments. In addition, we have an agreement with the NGO Join For Water that calls upon its public to support our nature sites. On top of that, there is a large collaboration with public authorities ranging from local governments, regional landscapes and provinces to regional bodies such as the Agency for Nature and Forests (ANB), Flanders Environment Agency (VMM), ... As part of the CurieuzeNeuzen science project, researching the effects of heat, drought and extremely wet weather on our nature reserves, we also cooperate with the University of Antwerp (UAntwerp). At international level, a climate project was submitted under the LIFE programme of the European Commission. For communicative and educational purposes, we also work with Eurosite, the European network organisation for natural site managers.

Hoe worden de criteria van de doelstelling ingevuld?

Stedelijke en voorstedelijke gebieden

Initiatives éventuelles à laquelle le projet participe :
Protected areas - national and regional parcs - Natura 2000

Maintenance à long terme

The wetlands will be maintained by Natuurpunt. Management practices are always adapted to the area. For example, mowing is limited (only when necessary) and excess grass cuttings are disposed of. There is no use of chemicals or biocidal products, and electric machines are used where possible (to reduce CO2 and particulate matter (PM) emissions). In some areas Galloway cattle is used for managing the area. Invasive plant species are removed where possible.


Urban wetlands combine different functions and ecosystem services in a qualitative approach. Wetlands are among the most valuable ecosystems in Europe, characterised by unique, highly threatened habitats. They are biodiversity hotspots where thousands of vegetation and wildlife species flourish. By restoring those urban wetlands, we strengthen biodiversity in urban areas and preserve rare habitats and species in Flanders. In addition, urban wetlands have a cooling effect on the surrounding environment and reduce the risk of floodings. They can improve local air quality and, as natural green spaces, are important for the mental and physical well-being of humans.

Andere projecten in verband met de doelstelling "Stedelijke en voorstedelijke gebieden"