Adaptive Management of Barriers in European Rivers
Man-made barriers in rivers have brought many benefits to society over hundreds of years – for navigation, power generation, recreation. However, this has led to heavy fragmentation of European rivers, leading to major loss of natural river functioning. It has also restricted or eliminated migration pathways for a range of fish species such as sturgeon, Atlantic salmon, sea lamprey and European eel. The AMBER project (Adaptive Management of Barriers in European Rivers) seeks to raise awareness of the problems posed by stream fragmentation, the pressures on freshwater ecosystems and the need for innovative solutions.
AMBER, which is a €6.2 million Euro multi-disciplinary research project, will see 20 partners from 11 countries including Ireland, combine citizen science and cutting-edge technology to map the distribution of barriers and assess their effects on freshwater organisms. It will work with hydroelectric companies, water providers, NGOs, anglers and local authorities to restore river connectivity. The project will encourage citizens to become involved in efforts to reconnect Europe’s rivers by mapping the location of barriers and assessing their impacts with the help of a smartphone app.
AMBER is funded under the EU Horizon 2020 programme of scientific research and has a four year term from 2016-2020.