A mulch is a layer of material applied to the surface of an area of soil. Its purpose is any or all of the following:· to conserve moisture· to improve the fertility and health of the soil· to reduce weed growth· to enhance the visual appeal of the areaMulching as NWRM is using organic material (e.g. bark, wood chips, grape pulp, shell nuts, green waste, leftover crops, compost, manure, straw, dry grass, leaves etc.) to cover the surface of the soil. It may be applied to bare soil, or around existing plants. Mulches of manure or compost will be incorporated naturally into the soil by the activity of worms and other organisms. The process is used both in commercial crop production and in gardening, and when applied correctly can dramatically improve the capacity of soil to store water.
WELCOME to the European NWRM platform
The EU Directorate General Environment promotes the use of nature-based green infrastructure solutions (official website) and this is progressively included in a range of policies of which for water. A range of activities and related relevant information portals are also available on climate change (Climate Adapt), on biodiversity (BISE), on forest (FISE).
As detailed on DG Environment official webpage, "Natural Water Retention Measures (NWRM) support Green Infrastructure by contributing to integrated goals dealing with nature and biodiversity conservation and restoration, landscaping, etc."
The current platform gathers information on NWRM at EU level. NWRM are green infrastructures applied to the water sector, which permit to achieve and maintain healthy water ecosystems, and offer multiple benefits.
From this page you can find out more about NWRM definition, browse NWRM related concepts, look for individual NWRMs or select them by benefits, access the practical guide that will help you find your way to implement NWRM, or directly access the different products: synthesis documents, catalogue of measures, catalogue of case studies. For easy navigation, please consult the user's guide. If ,you would like to have an overview on what this website could bring you, you can Access all main documents and datasets
LID is a toolbox of site-scale practices that the site designer and developer can utilize to:
- manage urban rainfall where it occurs for minimized stormwater concentration and runoff
- potentially lower short-term and long-term development costs
- improve water quality
- enhance natural habitat and flood control
- improve green space aesthetics and potentially increase property values
- increase community quality of life and livability
There are many practices that are used to support these benefits, including bioretention systems, rain gardens, vegetated rooftops, bioswales, rain barrels, and permeable pavements to name a few. By implementing LID principles and practices, water can be managed in a way that reduces the impact of built areas on the environment while providing numerous additional benefits. (source: LID symposium).
This concept is very similar to NWRM in the United States context. It is very connected to Green Infrastructure. See also the link to US EPA green infrastructure website.
Implementing NWRM is a multi discipline and multi purpose exercise that needs a thorough preparation. To help you through key components of this, this section you can:
Natural Water Retention Measures are multi-functional measures that aim to protect water resources and address water-related challenges by restoring or maintaining ecosystems as well as natural features and characteristics of water bodies using natural means and processes. […]