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Sustainable Sediment Management of Alpine Reservoirs considering ecological and economical aspects

Sustainable Sediment Management of Alpine Reservoirs considering ecological and economical aspects

Considering the trans-national idea of INTERREG III B the project ALPRESERV was proposed by partners from five different countries to gain and distribute experiences concerning sustainable sediment management strategies as part of an integrated approach intended by the EU-Water Framework Directive (WFD).

The Alpine Region is regarded as the most precious source of clean drinking water in Europe and of great importance for hydro power use. The demand for water often does not match with the natural supply as the temporal and spatial distribution of precipitation is a stochastic process and the discharge from alpine regions additionally influenced by snow and ice. To balance demand and supply and to manage water as an extremely valuable resource numerous reservoirs were built in the upper regions of the rivers enabling a third important task for spatial development along the rivers: flood protection.

In this context reservoirs are an essential part of human construction activities serving as storage for irrigation and drinking water supply purposes, energy production through hydro power generation, flood protection, low water regulation, tourism and many more. Regarding man-operated reservoirs accumulating material from subaerial weathering processes is reducing storage capacity interfering with the needs of water supply, flood protection and hydro power generation. The project ALPRESERV aims on a wise management of sediments on basis of experiences gained on national level to establish trans-national guidelines taking into account the EU Water Framework Directive and spatial development needs to preserve existing reservoirs and to avoid uncontrolled exploitation by constructing new storage capacity. Structured in different Work Packages deliveries of the cooperation comprises compendiums about basic knowledge of sediment sources, transport processes, and management strategies as well as practical and operational aspects of sediment handling techniques. Seven pilot action sites were carefully chosen representing high altitude, glacier-induced alpine environment as well as moderately steep river runoff situations in the peri-alpine belt. Beside technical and economical issues the project especially focuses on ecological aspects and minimization of negative consequences of sediment management strategies to the fragile ecosystems of the alpine rivers.



You may access the project website to find detailed and updated info on project structure, partners, news, events, pubblications and more.