In the Region of Wallonia the climate is temperate and the amount of water that falls is relatively abundant: rainfall amounts to about 700 - 1000 mm per year on average. Wallonia is a very green area therefore where there is no lack of water.
Engineers learned how to estimate the slopes and the drops, to build locks and storage basins. Canals were dug in order to facilitate the transport of merchandise.
In the 17th century, the engineers from Liège built the first hydraulic pumps that allowed them to pump water. One example is the Modave pump, which pumped water from the river Meuse in order to provide the water supplies and the water for the fountains. The most famous pump remains the Marly pump, built between 1681 and 1684 by the Walloon, Renkin Sualem, in order to supply the Château de Versailles, the gardens and the fountains with water. It was considered at the time to be the 8th wonder of the world and was the symbol of the expertise of the Walloon engineers.
The updating of these water pumping techniques led to the generalisation of the pumping out, which mean that mines and quarries could be worked.
All of these techniques were to develop very rapidly thereafter.
Today, distribution of water to the population is all controlled electronically
from the underground water sources (80%) and the surface waters, rivers
and dams (20%).
In 1995 a decree was passed in
which the parliament of Wallonia recognised water, the renewable resource,
as a common national heritage. This marked a new point of departure