Sea level rise puts pressure on the safety, ecology and economy of the coast and delta waters. The traditional response from the manager is then to reinforce flood defences. History has shown that this is effective, only it is often a costly operation, takes up a lot of space and only serves water safety. Innovations in coastal management are necessary and urgent to develop new concepts for the levee zone that provide flood safety, increase spatial quality (creating valuable nature and other societal benefits) and give substance to climate-neutral and circular operations. This challenge is already in play in the near future because the new water safety assessment requires a substantial reinforcement task for the dykes of the Western and Eastern Scheldt to be realised by 2050. BwN solutions offer a promising action perspective for our handling of sea level rise, but require more research for optimal incorporation on a large scale.