The Dutch province of Zeeland is situated in the southern part of the Delta region. The geographical location of the province and its history of inundation, land reclamation and dam-building, clearly illustrate the importance that water always has had and still has in The Netherlands. Coastal defence projects are of utmost importance for The Netherlands and the Delta Project is the crown project.The importance of this project does not only regard the protection against the sea; the Delta dams also contribute considerably to the regional infrastructure. They are a important contribution to the abolishment of the former isolation of the region. They control inland navigation and form important boundaries for water management. They separate salt, brackish and fresh water as well as waters with or without tidal-influence and they also influence the ecological systems in and along the waters.Through physical planning, including the coastal policy of today, land and water can be further integrated. This paper discusses the role of the Province in area planning, related to the division of labour between the various public authorities in The Netherlands: state, provinces and municipalities. Coastal and water policy at the provincial level have been largely integrated with relevant other interests.It may be concluded that regional planning and coastal policy are beginning to adopt a new view towards dealing with water.
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