The stated ecological objectives require investments of 850 million euros. A significant share of the costs of conservation can be financed by sand extraction from the Markermeer. Although we are talking about large sums of public money, spending will result in key social benefits. And neither is this sum required in one lump-sum. The Future Vision will be implemented in phases and will take 20 to 30 years. Awarding Natura 2000 status to Markermeer and IJmeer will significantly enhance the area’s quality of life and the Randstad’s position as an internationally competitive region. Furthermore, conservation measures will create employment and provide a basis for further urban development and tourism/recreational projects thanks to the ‘future-proof ecological system’.
How is it progressing?
In November 2009, the Cabinet opted for a future perspective that includes an ecological, infrastructural and urban Expansion of the Northern Randstad. The Cabinet insists that measures to improve the quality of nature are initiated soon. The definitive first-phase measures for the Future-proof Ecological System (TBES) depend on the recommendations of NMIJ (Natural Markermeer IJmeer project). Under the auspices of the NMIJ, the Dept. of Public Works (RWS) will continue up to 2015 to assess the assumptions made in the Development Paper and will test the proposed measures on a small scale using different experiments. Together with the region, the state authorities will now study the ways in which the plan’s various components can be realized.