Fight against weed pests in the Senegal River Delta | | Rijksdienst

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Fight against weed pests in the Senegal River Delta


The project contains the construction of 8 polders in the river delta.


Along the Senegal River




Senegal River Basin Development Authority

Competent Authority

Senegal River Basin Development Authority

Parties Involved

Royal Haskoning DHV

Project number


Total project costs / Total ORIO Grant amount

25,086,471 Euro / 14,110,851 Euro

Status project

Development Phase

Typha infestation along the Senegal River is a direct environmental consequence of the earlier construction of two dams (Diama and Manantali) in the Senegal river and has profoundly impacted the livelihood of the people using the river for their activities. Typha reeds currently form an almost impenetrable wall between the river dikes and the open water of the former riverbed, blocking direct access to the waterfront for local villagers living on the banks. Typha is also responsible for the increase in water borne diseases of bilharzia (90% of the population are infected) and malaria. People have difficulties to access the river to fetch water. Typha expansion is blocking in- en outlets and pump stations, which causes difficulties in providing water to the irrigated zones. Furthermore, the infested areas constitute a perfect breeding place for rice-eating birds; sometimes 50% of the rice harvest is lost to these birds. Finally, a steady drop in fish catches has been reported by local fisherman. All of these negative impacts of the Typha infestation justify large scale interventions.

The project is defined as the construction of 8 polders along the Senegal River. These polders include 63 km of polder dikes, about 60 km of drainage channels, about 8 pumping systems and at least 8 inlet structures. Four of these polders will be constructed on the Senegal side of the river and four on the Mauritania side. The polders are located close to the towns of Rosso and Richard Toll along existing agriculture fields. Another important aspect of the project is the clearance of the Typha and the preparation of the land in the new polders.

The project proposes the creation of polders where the Typha can not grow: a sustainable solution as it will mean that existing Typha will only have to be cleared once at the start of the project. As soon as the waterline will not be obstructed by Typha any more, local inhabitants will have easier access to water. The polders will create new agricultural ground in which rice and other agricultural products such as vegetables can be grown.

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