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

You can also join us on LinkedIn and access the NWRM community of practice gathered on our discussion forum, and you can submit a case study...

NEW: Access new French case studies


Removal of drainage ditches on wet meadow on Coat Carriou

The project involves the removal of drainage from a wet grassland at the head of a small Breton coastal river watershed in an area subject to nitrogen pressure. Located at the bottom of an hydromorphic valley, the Coat Carriou meadow has been drained by two ditches to allow the plot to be mowed. Collecting runoff from the hillside, the two ditches caused a short circuit in the meadow, leading the nitrate-laden runoff directly to the river stream. The two drainage ditches were filled in with the aim of eliminating the short circuit, allowing all water flowing to spread over the meadow. The aim was to improve the purifying effect of the grassland on the waters from the hillside, while maintaining agricultural activity. The short circuit has effectively been eliminated, allowing all the water on the slope to pass through the wetland where the purifying capacities make it possible to remove all the mineral nitrogen present in the water. As the purification capacities were already optimal before the work, they were not improved, but all water can now be purified. The reduced bearing capacity allow to mow the meadow only in dry years. It has been included in the grazing path of a herd of brittany pie-noir cows, able to graze wet grassland.


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. […]

Source: “EU policy document on Natural Water Retention Measures”, WG PoM, 2014)


full definition

Case studies

Measures have been implemented in the field.
To see examples of implementation see the catalogue of case studies or click directly on the map below.

Catalogue of case studies


Information on benefits, costs, effectiveness, financing etc. included in the three following categories:


Logos of all partners of NWRM project