I attended the Dam Removal in Europe conference a few years ago, which, like many other meetings in the last three years, was held in Zoom. A senior scientist working in freshwater ecology, one of the conference organisers, opened the event with a personal story.
Despite spending the majority of his career trying to teach about the importance of restoring dynamics to rivers throughout Germany and Europe, he only recently saw a free-flowing river.
Unused and abandoned barriers, some of which are over 100 years old, contribute significantly to the fragmentation of European rivers. To bring this issue to light, seven organisations banded together to form the group “Dam removal in Europe.”
According to The Guardian, more than 200 barriers will be removed in the region by 2021. This is an example that can serve as inspiration for bringing together various institutions and civil society to restore rivers around the world.