Improved water quality in coastal regions with sustainable aquifer storage


The quality of ground water in coastal regions can be particularly endangered by saltwater intrusion. This pollution creates shortages of potable water in many places, impacting negatively on both ecology and on human beings. In order to enable optimised management of water rescources, innovative subsurface water solutions have been developed and piloted in the Netherlands for several years. This approach has proven to be effective, sustainable and cost-efficient.

The technology has been assessed in and adapted to different country contexts in the framework of SUBSOL. This project was designed as a multi-partner, international research endeavor as part of the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme for research and innovation. SUBSOL catalysed the market breakthrough of subsurface water solutions.

Market uptake was fostered through a variety of measures, including new pilots, the development of site-specific business cases, building decision-making support tools and conducting capacity building. These activities target the Mediterranean region and Western Europe, as well as the overseas markets in the US, Brazil, China and Vietnam. The project online platform shares the project’s outcomes and links existing stakeholders and networks.

Within the international consortium, adelphi has built a promotional strategy that systematically creates acceptance for and speeds up market uptake of subsurface water solutions. The approach is replicable, allowing other small and medium sized enterprises in the water sector to utilize it in Europe and overseas.

adelphi conducted market scans and identified the most promising regions in the target countries. The analyses included, among others, examining political and economic framework conditions of national and regional water markets. Building on these outcomes, recommendations were worked out to inform both policy-makers and technology providers regarding the uptake of subsurface water management solutions.