ERRC 2014, Vienna, 27-29 October 2014
The inaugural 2013 European Riverprize and European River Restoration Conference were highly successful and attracted a large number of participants, who gave very positive feedback. This autumn, the next conference will be organised, again hosted by the city of Vienna.
The organisers, the SEE River project and the European Centre for River Restoration (ECRR), are optimistic that the 2014 conference and Riverprize gala can - again with the support of many (partner) organisations - build upon the success of last year and continue to strengthen the recognition and support of good river management in Europe.
The conference is organized by ECRR and the SEE River project
The ECRR is a European network consisting of national centres and individual members united in their mission to enhance and promote river restoration best practice throughout greater Europe. The ECRR counteracts the threats to natural riverine habitats by fostering the establishment of national river restoration networks, and by disseminating information on river restoration through the website, the newsletter and by organising events like the European River Restoration Conference.
The SEE River project is led by the Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia and involves 25 more partners from 12 countries. The project aims at developing innovative approaches to contemporary river corridor management by engaging stakeholders along 6 international rivers in South East Europe. It is co-funded by the EU in the framework of the Territorial Cooperation Programme South East Europe.
Through stakeholder engagement of different actors, such as experts, administration representatives and people living and working in the river corridors, the SEE project team is working towards new concepts and tools to enable the reconciliation of water management, conservation, restoration and development interests. The project’s facilitation of this stakeholder dialogue has improved the awareness and capacities on contemporary river corridor management of over 500 stakeholders in the region, supporting river restoration for sustainable future management of rivers. In various sessions, delegates of the upcoming 2014 European River Restoration Conference (ERRC) can learn about the inspiring experiences and lessons learned from 6 pilot rivers in the region.
Showcase new approaches and different themes for river restoration
The 2014 ERRC conference will showcase and discuss the realisation of new river restoration initiatives and approaches on a focused number of river restoration themes: urban resilience, sustainable land use and hydropower, hydro-morphological continuity, fish migration and ecological and economical benefits. Moreover, the conference will also examine the overall approach to integrated river basin management by examining cross-sectoral engagement and stakeholder dialogue. Furthermore, cooperation on local, regional, national and international levels will be discussed. The plenary session of the EEA and the thematic sessions of Wetlands International, the Global Water Partnership and the EEA will specifically cover these new approaches.
Key challenges for Integrated River Basin Management and River Restoration
This year’s European River Restoration Conference addresses the following key challenges for the future:
- Green Infrastructure(GI): A strategically planned network of (semi) natural areas designed and managed to deliver a wide range of ecosystem services, now being supported as the cross-sectoral approach by the EU.
- Natural Water Retention Measures (NWRM) is another cross-sectoral approach, aimed at reducing vulnerability to natural disasters, namely flooding and drought. Ecosystems and their service provision should be maintained and restored by agricultural buffers and environmental flows. The EU will develop guidance for NWRM and ecological flows by 2014 and promote the NWRM in the integrated river basin management planning cycle.
- A third challenge forms the innovative new approach called Contemporary River Corridor Management (CRCM). Over the period of the last two years, the SEE River project has worked in 12 countries of Central and South East Europe to develop a new approach of cross-sectoral cooperation in river management. The project focused on the river corridor as the part of the river basin where most pressures are likely to occur.
For more information visit the conference website at www.errc2014.eu
Author: Hil Kuypers, ECRR, European Centre for River Restoration