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100 climate solutions from Danish Municipalities


The flooding of Usserød stream (Usserød Å) became the catalyst for a cross-municipal collaboration to adapt to climate change.

Together, three municipalities have found one common solution and vision for a common challenge. Usserød Å, which stretches eight kilometers through Rudersdal, Hørsholm, and Fredensborg municipalities, will be regarded as a valuable element of the urban natural environment in the future, as well as a tool for climate adaptation.


The project came about after heavy rainfall in the year 2010 caused the watercourse to break its banks and flood the surrounding areas. Through the partnership (a former EU-LIFE-supported project), the municipalities have established a permanent organizational model with shared preparedness and a common knowledge database to reduce flood risks along the river.

Walking along Usserød Å, the current water level can be read at a number of measuring stations using QR codes.

Hydraulic measurement and control systems have been set up which can simulate the water’s movement at different precipitation events, allowing the municipalities to model and prepare for potential future events. In addition, wet meadows and sluice systems have been established to regulate flooding in times of extreme rain, protecting more vulnerable areas downstream. A digital handbook has been developed, allowing other professionals to learn from the project.

How the Global Goals are addressed

Climate Action

The municipalities have a joint technical toolbox for climate adaptation. Data collection enables a common alert and response system which citizens can also access.

Life Below Water

The new management strategy for one of the sluices maintains a constant water level in Sjælsø, the stream’s feeding lake. This approach protects ecosystems through regulating plankton levels, since more of the predatory fish survive.

Partnerships for the Goals

The project has paved the way for ongoing cross-municipal cooperation between the three municipalities around Usserød Å, which can lead to cooperation in other areas as well.