’Eco-crossovers’ in the German–Dutch Euregio Rhine-Waal
There are many opportunities for enhancing cooperation to improve regional sustainability and biodiversity as an engine for greening in the Euregio Rhine-Waal. During a brainstorming afternoon on 29 October 2015, some 40 representatives of partners from both the Dutch and German side identified opportunities and challenges within the region and looked into opportunities for developing and implementing ’eco-crossovers’ between biodiversity, sustainability and economic development. The session was led by ECNC together with the Euregio Rhine-Waal Secretariat, and held at their premises in Kleve (Germany), in the beautiful Rhine floodplain landscape.
The Euregio Rhine-Waal facilitates cross-border cooperation on economic and societal matters, looking for synergies between partners and initiatives from both sides of the border. The organization represents 49 German and Dutch municipalities, three regional authorities and two chambers of commerce, all situated in the region where the river Rhine crosses the German–Dutch border.
The seminar, chaired by ECNC’s Executive Director Rob Wolters, started with inspirational presentations on biodiversity and ecosystem services and how these can offer benefits for employment, health, cross-border cooperation, water management, climate change, and businesses. Examples from experience on linking nature and health in the Dutch Province of Noord-Brabant and the municipality of Oisterwijk, and results of the Interreg climate project KliKER were presented. This was followed by an interactive group session during which participants identified common challenges and opportunities for cooperation.
The Euregio Rhine-Waal together with ECNC will follow up on the consensus reached in the meeting to explore ’eco-crossover’ project developments.