Normal no longer exists

It’s mid-February, and outside it’s 12 degrees. The daffodils and crocuses are in bloom, and it feels like spring. Like many others, I’m looking forward to the lovely weather. But it is disconcerting that temperature records have been broken yet again.

Climate change speaks to us through the weather, which is different from what we are used to. Normal no longer exists. This is both challenging and motivating when it comes to our work. Challenging, because in our sector we’re proud of our long-term perspective. Yet it is precisely that long term that is full of uncertainties. That becomes clear in the interview with two IPCC co-chairs in this Deltalife. Motivating, because of the increased urgency to devise concrete proposals.

We don’t just look towards the future, but also learn from our past, as we have in our article on the Roggebot lock. This 68-year-old lock was dug up, and forensic research carried out so we could determine what factors influence the expected lifetime of water infrastructure objects.

Last year, Deltares’ management visited the Dutch island of Terschelling to carry out ‘fieldwork’ and to immerse ourselves in the challenges that climate change causes, such as salinisation, fresh water supply, and drought and its impact on this beautiful island. You will read more on that in this edition. Our ‘Dynamic Adaptive Policy Pathways’ approach in New Zealand provided advice on uncertainties. We also tell more about our work on water quality in San Francisco, which we carried out for the US government.

In other words, we are sharing more stories about our work. We are proud of it and want to show what needs to be done around the world. Our knowledge, software, and research facilities help us contribute to the action perspective. This helps us to spur, governments, citizens, and professionals to act.

In this edition

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Annemieke Nijhof

“Climate change speaks to us through the weather”

Annemieke Nijhof, Managing Director Deltares