ICPR – International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine

154. Network of biotopes along the Rhine


Among other things, the ICPR programme "Rhine 2020" aims at improving the Rhine ecosystem and restoring the biotope network.

The report on the “Network of Biotopes along the Rhine” and the associated ICPR-Atlas on a scale of 1:100,000 for 35 sections of the Rhine from Lake Constance to the outlet into the North Sea represent another milestone for the further ecological upgrading of the Rhine system.

On the basis of defined types of biotope groups, the current status, the development needs (target status) and the resulting need for action per type of biotope group are described for the 35 sections of the entire Rhine lowlands and presented in the Rhine Atlas. An analysis of the biotope network for the entire Rhine has followed.

This analysis has led to ICPR-recommendations for the development of a sustainable biotope network along the Rhine, the implementation of which is necessary to promote the development of permanent populations of relevant organisms under the given spatial conditions.

The combination of report and atlas provides a good basis for the corresponding planning and assessment procedures in the Rhine bordering states, as the development goals and focal points of measures are defined. Time has now come to implement the necessary measures on site. This is the responsibility of the states on their respective territories.

Moreover, there are manifold points of interconnection between ecological upgrading, the implementation of the EC Water Framework Directive and flood protection measures, which have to be used in order to create a more intact habitat of the Rhine and the Rhine floodplain for people as well as for animals and plants.

This report is available in German, French and Dutch.