ICPR – International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine

Re-introduction of salmon on the right track

Koblenz, 29 April 2010

The workshop „Master Plan Migratory Fish Rhine“ which the International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine staged in the Regierungspräsidium Freiburg (Germany) on 27 and 28 April 2010 hosted a large number of international participants. More than 90 experts took part in an exchange of information on on-going and possible measures to restore the continuity of salmon waters often obstructed by constructions and to improve the corresponding habitats. The “Master Plan Migratory Fish Rhine” (Technical Report no. 179, <link http: www.iksr.org>www.iksr.org) already lists corresponding measures.
Specific priority measures are: Improve the access to the Rhine from the sea passing by the Haringvliet sluices and to the habitats in the Upper Rhine tributaries and improve the implementation of the prohibited salmon catches in the entire Rhine catchment. 

During the workshop it became evident that local actors require precise instructions to successfully implement the Master Plan. Strategies aimed at optimizing the river continuity at existing constructions must be further developed and pilot installations protecting downstream migrating fish are required to improve knowledge on the problems of downstream migration.

The adverse effects of several consecutive hydropower plants on fish habitats will be taken into account, including the entire area of the tributaries. The experts agreed a closer exchange of knowledge on the required good conditions for restoring salmon populations for which more than 1000 ha in the so-called programme waters prove to be apt in the Rhine tributaries.

In addition, it was agreed to inform the population, particularly sports fishermen on the interdiction of salmon catches in all Rhine bordering countries.

These problems were illustrated during an excursion to the rivers Elz, Dreisam and Leopoldskanal, where practical examples for the restoration of river continuity were presented. New fish passages to be constructed at the Rhine barrages in Strasbourg and Gerstheim will again make this river system accessible for salmon.

The international experts witnessed representatives of the Landesfischereiverband Baden supporting the programme of salmon restoration and of RegioWasser e.V. stocking young salmon into R. Elz.

Further information
International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine (ICPR)
Anne Schulte-Wülwer-Leidig
Tel. +49-(0)261-94252-19
Mobile +49-171-322 65 82

Short information
As Rhine bordering countries, Switzerland, France, Germany and the Netherlands as well as Luxemburg and the European Community co-operate within the International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine (ICPR) on the basis of a treaty under international law. The President and the different ICPR fora are supported by the international staff of the permanent secretariat in Koblenz (Germany). Furthermore, the secretariat gives support to the countries in the Rhine watershed when implementing the European Water Framework Directive (Directive 2000/60/EC) and the European Directive on the Assessment and Management of Flood Risks (2007/60/EC). To this end, transboundary co-operation was extended to Austria, Liechtenstein and the Belgian region Wallonia. The working languages of the ICPR are German, French and Dutch. For detailed information on the ICPR please browse to the ICPR website: <link http: www.iksr.org>www.iksr.org.