The Dutch have a rich history related to turning sea and lakes into land.
- Jan Adriaanszoon Leeghwater
Jan Adriaanszoon Leeghwater (1575-1650) reclaimed land by using windmills to power water pumps, thereby emptying the lakes. (Leeghwater means “Empty water”).
Dutch windmills used for water pumping
Using wind power only, many of the former lakes in the province of North Holland were made accessible to the people and turned into fertile farming land.
The Zandmotor; new land to increase coastal protection
In the year 2012, the Dutch have completed another amazing land reclamation project, called the Zandmotor (Sand engine in English).
Because of the forecasted global warming and associated sea level rising, the Dutch government proposed an innovative method to better protect its coastline.
The Dutch coastline only consist of sand dunes and these are very vulnerable to storms and high tides.
The Zandmotor is a manmade island and consists of sand only. It is sized about 1×2 km. It is actually attached to the main land.
The purpose of this artificial island is that over the next 20 years, it will be washed away by wind and sea current, causing the sand to deposit along the existing coastline thereby giving increased protection to the hinterland.
This method of coastal protection, is, according the Dutch government, the cheapest method, but also offers a recreational purpose : the artificial island has now become a kite buggy paradise !
Snowbuggy’s team member Eric “MTwater”, a descendant of the famous Jan Adriaanszoon Leeghwater, immediately recognized the potential of this manmade land for kitebuggying.
Just a few days after to official opening of the Zandmotor to the public, Eric took his kitebuggy and had a great day out kitebugging on the Zandmotor!
He clocked a 50 km distance and a top speed of 64 km/hr with his Recon instrument GPS goggle.
Snowbuggy's team member Eric "MTwater" and his Recon GPS goggle at the Zandmotor