Comparative assessment of the vulnerability and resilience of deltas

This project initially started as the “Comparative assessment of the vulnerability and resilience of 10 deltas”. And was carried out by Deltares, Alterra Wageningen UR, WWF and Delta Alliance wings. It was one of the first projects under Delta Alliance. A generic framework is created to study the physical, ecological and socio-economic impacts and adaptive responses regarding the most affected sectors in deltas worldwide. Extensive descriptions of the deltas are provided. The ten deltas that are assessed are: Rhine- Meuse (The Netherlands), Mekong (Viet Nam), Ciliwung (Indonesia), Ganges-Brahmaputra (Bangladesh), California Bay (USA), Mississippi (USA), Yangtze (China), Nile (Egypt), Incomati (Mozambique) and Danube (Romania) deltas.

The project builds upon the work done for the Aquaterra 2009 conference in Amsterdam, on the project “Adaptation strategies for shoreline development in San Francisco Bay” and its corresponding workshop in September 2009, and on recent recommendations following the World Estuary Alliance conference regarding the development of a worldwide assessment of estuaries by means of “scorecards”. Scorecards make it possible to compare current and future states of deltas responding to changing conditions. They are presented as tables, representing a highly aggregated assessment of the current and future state of the delta. Lessons learned, research gaps and opportunities for knowledge exchange and collaboration between deltas are identified in order to enhance resilience and sustainable development in deltas.

In 2014, four additional deltas were added. The Ayeyarwady, Parana, Tana and Zambezi delta, are elaborated in the same way as the deltas in the earlier version, by means of score cards and (summarized) delta descriptions. The overall synthesis and conclusions chapters in the report involve all 14 deltas.

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