Water adaptation in urban areas - case of Rotterdam

Submitted by Ase Johannessen | published 27th Jun 2022 | last updated 8th Jul 2023
Urban adaptation for UN Water 2023
Rotterdam water square

Water square in Rotterdam

Water squares in Rotterdam an example of smart water adaptation

This video explains the impacts of climate change on cities, and ways to mitigate them.

The climate is changing and we can see it in the water cycle. In the last decade we have seen increasingly severe storms and rise in sea levels. There have been unprecendented floods on all continents. It even rained in Greenland. Floods are occuring all over the globe, especially in Africa.

Water flows in rivers and streams, through soil and plants and through the air and underground. Only a functioning biosphere can regulate water making it a catalyst for a virtual cycle.

Urban areas are hotspots for risks. Water however has the potential to trigger progress. Take the example of Rotterdam. City resilience office Arnound Molenar says, "We have introduced the concept of the water square to increase social cohesion, and quality of urban life. They are designed to store excessvie rainfall. Citizens can develop rain gardens and have also developed a program for green roofs. Rotterdam has been transformed by water resilience."

The story of Rotterdam is of living with water. Stakeholders have worked together to increase water resilient development.