Welcome to the website of the European Centre for River Restoration (ECRR)

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The ECRR is a European network consisting of national centres, organisations, institutions and individual subscribents bound by their mission to encourage and support ecological river restoration throughout greater Europe.

The ECRR connects people and organizations working on river restoration. The network consists of almost 1000 contacts (organisations and individuals), is represented in 12 European countries by a national centre, and works together closely with a number of key partners.

The ECRR supports development of best practices of river restoration and disseminates information on ecological river restoration: for instance via the RiverWike Platform for case studies from all over Europe.

        Subscribe to the monthly newsletter by this link ECRRNetwork eNews 

What is river restoration?

River restoration is action that restores the natural state and functioning of a river system in support of biodiversity, recreation, flood safety and landscape development. Read more...

Step-by-step guidance on how to develop and implement a successful river restoration project in Europe.

River restoration can generate economic benefits from tourism, recreation, flood control and many other services provided by healthy river ecosystems.

Restoration can make significant contributions to flood risk reduction by increasing the natural retention capacity of rivers. Excess water can be absorbed by restoring wetlands and floodplains, former meanders and other natural storage areas.

River restoration contributes to biodiversity by restoring natural habitats that support aquatic animals and plants.

Hydropower production may harm rivers by affecting changes such as natural water flows and disconnecting upstream and downstream areas. Restoration offers opportunities to mitigate these impacts.



The RESTORE project

The ECRR worked together in close collaboration with the RESTORE project, which ran between 2010 and 2013. It launched with six European partners and the objective of making connections between river restoration professionals in Europe and joining existing national efforts on river restoration.

The RESTORE partnership created this website to share knowledge and promoting best practice on river restoration in Europe. The partnership encourage the restoration of European rivers towards a more natural state for increased ecological quality, flood risk reduction, and social and economic benefits. As the project has ended, the ECRR will carry this forward.

Some of the other key outputs of the RESTORE project are the RiverWiki, the Layman's report (that sets a direction for future activities) and the river restoration guide for planners: Rivers by Design.

Publications-Latest uploads

ECRR Response to the Public Consultation to inform the Fitness Check of the EU Water Framework Directives and related Directives.

The ECRR is an independent Association, free to voice opinions, irrespective of the interest of partners and supporters. ECRR's main review conclusions are:

  • It is generally not the WFD and RBMP instrument causing problems in achieving results.
  • The aspect that fails is the implementation at the local, regional and national levels.
  • Failing is often based on conflicting objectives, lack of policy coherence or lack of political willingness and understanding.
  • ECRR remains very supportive of the WFD and does not want to see it or its ambitions weakened.
  • The WFD fits very well with the concept and vision of river restoration promoted by the ECRR.
  • This concept and vision fits very well with the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration aim to restore degraded and destroyed ecosystems.
  • It is likely if the requirements for the WFD are lowered, then the status of rivers will not be subject to as many restoration actions at either a national or EU scale.

Download the full report: ECRR Submission to WFD Review 2010.3.19.pdf


ECRR Newsletter 3-2018 December

This newsletter testifies how a part of ECRR's mission 'Connecting people and organisations working on river restoration and management' is brought in practice in different manners, like by the questionnaire about ECRR communications, the ECRR general members meeting, participating in conferences and seminars, stimulating national river restoration centres, supporting of the WFD Review campaign and the call for collaboration on  river barrier location, removal and mitigation in Europe. By this way, already only in a couple of months hundreds to thousands of people are directly and/or indirectly contacted and connected.

Newsletter ECRR 3-2018.pdf


Presentations on river restoration and WFD implementation

To the occasion of the ECRR General Members Meeting a mini-symposium was organised by STOWA the National Centre for Stream and River Restoration in the Netherlands. The general theme was 'River restoration & WFD implementation'. An European and 4 national views from this perspective were presented to the 50 participants of the symposium in the morning, followed by a field exscursion in the afternoon.

OpeningPresentationGMM2018 ErnestdeGrootSTOWA.pdf

ECRRViewonRiverRestorationandWFDimplementation MartinJanes ECRRTheRRC.pdf

SystemAnalysisasbasisforriverrestoration BasvanderWalSTOWA.pdf


Enhancedriverrestoration&WFDimplementationNorway AndersIversenNorway.pdf


Case studies on river continuity restoration by weir removal in France!

The Agency for Biodiversity, also the National Centre for River Restoration in France provided us 6 case studies on river continuity restoration by weir removal in English language. These case studies are also included in the RiverWiki, but these information sheets give other, additional information about the projects.

1. REX2018_ALAGNON_GB_v2BD.pdf

2. REX2018_ERVE_GB_v3BD.pdf

3. REX2018_LEFF_GB_v2BD.pdf

4. REX2018_MARIA_GB_v2BD.pdf

5. REX2018_SIENNE_GB_v1BD.pdf

6. REX2018_SOANAN_GBv2BD.pdf


ECRR Newsletter 2-2018 July

The content of this ECRR Newsletter shows that the river restoration and river management communities are more, and more together on the move for more and better river restoration activities. The articles about the IS Rivers 2018 Conference and the GWP-CEE Summer School 2018 ‘Towards Agenda 2030’ witness a real drive by the youth and the science. Then the articles of the winner of the UK River Prize 2018 ‘Hill to Levels’, the French river continuity restoration approach and the Yecla de Yeltes Dam Removal, in Spain prove that the (best) practices are available.

The DriDanube Project article on the ‘Drought Risk in the Danube region’ describes an advanced approach for monitoring, early warning and impact assessments of droughts for the development of a strategy to improve drought emergency response.

A number of informative announcements are in this issue highlighted as well: The World Rivers Day on the 23rd of September, a handbook presentation ‘From sea to source 2.0’ on river connectivity restoration, and a call for cooperation on knowledge about all aspects of riparian vegetation by the COST CONVERGES Action. We want to remark the 16th EUROPE-INBO 2018 International Conference on the implementation of the European Water Framework Directive will be held in Sevilla, Spain and finally the international river restoration event calendar is updated extensively.

Newsletter ECRR 2018-2-July.pdf


For more publications go to the Publications page.

Tweets ECRR and partners

TweetId: 1120776518123311104 ECRR Network ECRRnetwork ECRRnetwork Dutch/European Premiere Love Flows Documentary by @fishmigration introduced by Arjan Berkhuyzen director World Fish… https://t.co/rbwc5GkomD 23-04-19 19:48
TweetId: 1120747273384861697 Fish Migration fishmigration fishmigration Love Flows documentary premiere at the @groningerforum in Groningen, Netherlands! Can’t wait for the public release… https://t.co/RJAgSUUojQ 23-04-19 17:52
TweetId: 1120647537462075392 SYKE SYKEinfo SYKEinfo RT SYKEint: How to balance the efficiency of #arctic #oilspill response and their environmental impacts? #GraceOilProject will… https://t.co/CvMgCsfUTM 23-04-19 11:16
TweetId: 1120643740018913280 WWF CEE WWFCEE WWFCEE Pilot Stocking of Russian Sturgeon and Sterlet in Romania and Hungary, April 18. Sturgeon and other migratory fish… https://t.co/ruke5oGFgj 23-04-19 11:01
TweetId: 1120638590944514048 The RRC The_RRC The_RRC Love Your River Telford Site Visit, May 22nd, Shorpshire @LYR_Shropshire Book your place & join us as we visit tec… https://t.co/4OvwVYKmxf 23-04-19 10:40
TweetId: 1120621426896199680 SYKE SYKEinfo SYKEinfo RT YTerveyslehti: Pirjo Korhonen @KASELYKESKUS ja Heidi Ahkola @SYKEinfo kirjoittavat Ympäristö ja Terveys-lehdessä 3/2019 vesiympär… https://t.co/6BHlzwLHIS 23-04-19 09:32
TweetId: 1120618832475897856 Riversymposium riversymposium riversymposium Another great study tour on offer is our Aboriginal Culture Day #Cruise! Enjoy an indigenous experience of tribal s… https://t.co/PkuuoqNy3U 23-04-19 09:22
TweetId: 1120616985925226496 SYKE SYKEinfo SYKEinfo RT sariannukka: Meillä on tämä #lanta'data Suomeen koottuna. Samoin muut kierrätettävät biomassat. On myös työkalut mallintaa niide… https://t.co/b5Tqe5JXCa 23-04-19 09:14
TweetId: 1120605781265649665 WWF CEE WWFCEE WWFCEE Instead of purchasing new items, reuse and upcycle your old items.♻️There are so many exciting ways to upcycle! Tak… https://t.co/iiKhUy3bbB 23-04-19 08:30
TweetId: 1120595094225076224 International RiverFoundation ReviveOurRivers ReviveOurRivers An alternative version, featuring freshwater fish! https://t.co/HmTWTEDWXK 23-04-19 07:47
TweetId: 1120583115141984257 International RiverFoundation ReviveOurRivers ReviveOurRivers In 1972, the Clean #Water Act passed, with the goal of making all #rivers in the country swimmable and fishable aga… https://t.co/k4YgPcrUqK 23-04-19 07:00
TweetId: 1120567771010564096 SYKE SYKEinfo SYKEinfo Uhanalaisia kovakuoriaisia on tuoreen uhanalaisuusarvioinnin mukaan 288 lajia, eli noin 8 % arvioiduista. ”Meillä o… https://t.co/qKpwf7Ku43 23-04-19 05:59
TweetId: 1120380969666715650 GWP CEE GWPCEE GWPCEE #Climatechange is impacting the water resources & changing the world around us. We have been working towards shifti… https://t.co/ykACaql3cc 22-04-19 17:36
TweetId: 1120373601851588608 Fish Migration fishmigration fishmigration RT alison_bowden: Mike Pentony @NOAAFish_GARFO announces #Plymouth as North America HQ for global celebration of… https://t.co/Qt2FHbV7wT 22-04-19 17:07
TweetId: 1120373551511625728 Fish Migration fishmigration fishmigration RT WWFEU: Delay, delay, delay. Exemptions to the EU water law must be exceptions, not the rule! Too many countries are sittin… https://t.co/3EK8ecTDUC 22-04-19 17:07
TweetId: 1120363698063912966 CIREF Cirefluvial Cirefluvial Advanced Course on River Restoration - from theory to practice, que tendrá lugar en Braga entre los días 13 y 17 de… https://t.co/5qFplmkQ5y 22-04-19 16:28
TweetId: 1120362863208607744 CIREF Cirefluvial Cirefluvial Advanced Course on River Restoration - from theory to practice, que tendrá lugar en Braga entre los días 13 y 17 de… https://t.co/SeiSpLaLLS 22-04-19 16:24
TweetId: 1120292437199601672 WWF CEE WWFCEE WWFCEE The average bath uses 37 gallons of water?Simple choices in your daily routine can help save a lot of water: 💧Take… https://t.co/kJfEt75z2h 22-04-19 11:45
TweetId: 1120259567475015680 ECRR Network ECRRnetwork ECRRnetwork RT GToroimac: Networking for introverted scientists Tips https://t.co/qPi5m0K86J https://t.co/Vb5SWG4eFv 22-04-19 09:34
TweetId: 1120239168657948674 Fish Migration fishmigration fishmigration Happy #EarthDay !! EXCITED to announce this years #WorldFishMigrationDay North American HQ will be in Plymouth, Mas… https://t.co/VYfm63A0ld 22-04-19 08:13

River Restoration Events



Estonia, 22-23 May 2019

  • Current status and the future of dam removal in the USA; Bob Irvin.
  • Dam removal situation in Denmark and Finland.
  • Three special dam removal cases from Sweden, Finland and Spain.
  • Film premiere; Love Flows Documentary.
  • Two on site experiences: Sindi Dam and Purtse River.

Information and registration:


6th ERRC, Vienna October '14

The ECRR and the SEE River Project together organised the 6th edition of the European River Restoration Conference (ERRC), integrated with the Final event of the SEE River project. The ERRC was held from 27 - 29 October in Vienna. 

The webpage on the conference contains all the presentations, recordings of the presentations, the conference report and the final statement.

Alongside the conference, the 2nd European Riverprize was awarded in Vienna's magnicifant City Hall on 28 October; the winner is the River Mur (Austria)!

Wetlands International presents River Talk; a series of short video interviews with featured speakers at the 2014 European River Restoration Conference. Topics include the state of Europe’s rivers, challenges, opportunities and innovative approaches for river restoration, the European Riverprize, better implementation of European environmental directives through green infrastructure, floods and disaster risk reduction, and urban planning. 

5th ERRC, 2013

Celebrating successes & addressing challenges

The European Centre for River Restoration, alongside the RESTORE partnership, organised the 5th European River Restoration Conference (11-13 September 2013) in Vienna, Austria.

The event showcased inspiring examples of river restoration and shared lessons learned about the successes, challenges and opportunities for river restoration in Europe. The conference brought together over 300 key policy makers and restoration practitioners to discuss opportunities for river restoration to achieve a number of environmental, economic and social objectives.

The conference featured the 1st European Riverprize awarded by the International River Foundation and won by the river Rhine.

See the conference programme and view the presentations, posters and videos on our conference page.