AquaConSoil, Europe’s largest conference on sustainable use and management of soil, sediment and water resources is coming to Flanders! The conference aims to bridge the gap between science, policy and industry by hosting delegates from research institutes and universities, governmental and consultant organizations and from industry.

From 20 to 24th May 2019 VITO’s Flemish Water Knowledge Centre (VLAKWA), the Public Waste Agency of Flanders (OVAM) and the Flemish soil remediation sector join forces with Deltares to receive about 600 worldwide soil experts in the Flanders Meeting and Convention Center Antwerp (FMCCA).

Thanks to an ambitious soil remediation policy, Flanders has achieved a leading position in the treatment of soil contamination. Parallel to this policy, a strong private soil sector has developed in Flanders with a very unique level of expertise. Two very strong assets that have contributed to the fact that Flanders was able to attract this leading conference to the city of Antwerp.

Expertise at governmental and private level

After the application of the soil remediation decree in 1996, Flanders aimed to start the remediation of all historical polluted soils in a period of 40 years. In 2019, Flanders is on schedule. All historical potentially polluted sites need to be investigated by 2028, the remediation of the remaining contaminated sites should start by latest 2036.

Since 1996, the soil remediation sector has been able to develop strongly in Flanders, including soil experts, remediation contractors, environmental lawyers as well as environmental laboratories and the suppliers of specific products and equipment and services. During this period, the sector has gained a unique expertise from their home market. Outside Belgium this expertise is also highly appreciated. The Public Waste Agency of Flanders (OVAM) regularly receives foreign delegations to explain our soil policy. The sector is involved in supporting and executing complex soil remediation in Europe, the Middle East, Canada, China …

Collaboration is the secret ingredient

The private soil remediation sector, the government (OVAM), the academic world and research institutes (such as VITO) have a long history in collaboration. This collaboration affects different aspects such as organizing feedback on legislation, setting up quality standards within the sector, codes of good practice, development of remediation solutions for specific environmental problems … The collaboration has also led to initiatives to show Flanders to an international audience. The conference AquaConSoil was organized in Ghent the first time in 2003 by Flanders, and these same “soil parties” combine forces for AquaConSoil 2019 in Antwerp.

Antwerp perfect destination for international environmental conferences

The city of Antwerp has supported the ambitions of VITO’s Flemish Water Knowledge Centre (VLAKWA), the Public Waste Agency of Flanders (OVAM) and the soil remediation sector from the beginning. Antwerp offers all the assets and conference facilities to receive the international environmental conference.


AquaConSoil is organised from 20th to 24th May 2019 in the FMCCA in Antwerp. The programme offers thematic lecture sessions, poster sessions, special sessions, exhibition, technical tours, courses and a matchmaking event. AquaConSoil is the largest European conference about applied soil sciences and techniques.

For more information: Jan Verheyen – Stationsstraat 110 2800 Mechelen
T 015 284 148 – G: 0479 89 07 46