In 1999 Dutch water boards invested a total 0.7 billion euro, over 10% more than in the preceding year. This increase is in line with overall investment growth in the mid-nineties. More money was spent on dams, dikes and water management in particular in 1999. The floods in 1993 and 1995 have led the water authorities to bring forward the reinforcement of large stretches of river dike. In 1998 water boards spent 50 million euro on the improvement of dikes and quaysides. In 1999 this rose to 186 million euro.
However, just increasing the heights of dikes and quaysides is not enough. Rain water flows more quickly across large areas paved with tarmac or concrete, which means it is increasingly likely to cause problems. To minimise this risk, since the end of the nineties water boards have been increasing the capacity of pumping stations, widening waterways and creating extra reservoir capacity to cope with sudden temporary water surges. In 1998 water boards spent 136 million euro on water management, one year later this had risen to 163 million euro.
Investment by water boards
Investment in water quality management rose to 386 million euro in 1999. This included spending on newly constructions of and maintenance of water purification installations and the cleansing of polluted river and lake beds. In 1998 these investments amounted to 372 million euro.