River University

Having in mind that currently 60% of our European rivers and lakes are in poor condition – there is still a lot to improve , also for  our health & safety. What can we do and how can we  support this process? Join the River University and let’s find out our common answer! We start from Poland as the initiator and first host country, then we will move  around other countries in the Baltic Sea region in the upcoming years.

Recently, in Poland, the National Surface Water Renaturalisation Program was formed and its manual released. Now it’s time for its implementation. Based on the European Commission’s decision in June 2020, the EU Water Framework Directive will not be revised,  so the second challenge is reaching a “Good Environmental Status” for all European waters by 2027.
Moreover, on October 24th, the last day of our River University, we will celebrate the “World Fish Migration Day”, raising awareness on the importance of rivers´ connectivity and migratory fish. These three topics will be our highlights, opening more deeply the doors of riverine knowledge , and meeting those who live nearby and work with rivers. 

The River University will be held  in the surroundings of Drawa National Park and its mysterious rivers. From the slow, lazy flow as befits a low-land river, to the dynamic of a mountain river, we will get to know one of the best examples of natural riverine habitats – Drawa. Its unique character, changeable nature, and underwater meadows, will show us river´s life and ecosystem. Regional examples will let us discover the unknown secrets of rivers as well as familiarize with local knowledge as a source of good practical hints.

Details
Date: 20-24.10.2020
Location: Poland, Drawa river, location of recently awarded project LIFE DrawaResidence by the lake – Pestkownica, Krzyż, Wielkopolska voivodship

Speakers
Read the list of confirmed speakers and their biographies here.

Agenda
Read and download the agenda here.

Registration
If you are interested, please register at this link: https://forms.gle/hyd8YGTNCpRtDm3X7
The registrations are open until 30 September 2020.

Participants
A variety of river stakeholders are invited, such as local people, institutions, media, anglers, farmers, decision makers, scientists, and administration,not only from Poland but from all the Baltic Sea countries. 

Important to read
Number of participants: 30 max. Our riverine gathering might be switched into online mode or be postponed due to the current circumstances with COVID-19 and different restrictions amongst the countries. Live streaming is planned during the 5-days event.

Next year, Lithuania will host the River University, in collaboration with Lithuanian Fund for Nature. The same year Polish Absolvents Club of River University will be optionally held to keep our group in creative touch – feel free to invite us to your river!

Program scope – River University 2020, Poland

~ WHY do we need to protect rivers: rivers life and functioning, riverine ecosystem services and its benefits for people, National Surface Water Renaturalisation Program in Poland and its goals

~ WHAT tools do we have to protect rivers in Poland and in Europe? How citizens can help and support? How efficient is transboundary cooperation in this field? What is the role of institutions and authorities? Institutional responsibility & efficiency in caring about our common resource – what needs to be improved?  Agriculture and floods as bold examples of what is the future in terms of our health & safety depending on riverine wellness? What are modern and water/river-friendly development directions?

~ HOW to make the right steps happen – how can we implement tools and strategies to protect our rivers? Field trip to a best practice example on river renaturalization – Drawa river LIFE project and visit to a  natural spawning ground of salmonids.

~ WHO needs to be committed to save our rivers? Multi stakeholder engagement/approach; finally – what is a river without fish? Let the fish make love and people enjoy the rivers at their best!

Contact person:
Ewa Leś, CCB Working Group Leader on River Basin and Wastewater Management
+48 517 428 736, evvales@gmail.com

Co-founder of Koalicja Ratujmy Rzeki/Save The Rivers Coalition (KRR), a social initiative for the protection of natural rivers in Poland, gathering the voices of 'river stakeholders' into one strong tone. Member of EEB water working group, Observer of International Commission for the Protection of the Odra River against Pollution. Co-creator and coordinator of the first Water Round Table in cooperation with the Polish Ministry of Environment (2009-2011). Engaged in creating a Partnership for the Baltic initiative (2007-2011). Particularly working in areas of transboundary rivers, water stakeholders inclusion and engagement, water conflicts, water democracy building. A supporter of NVC dialogue. She comes from her two parental organizations: Society of Friends of Ina and Gowienica rivers and EkoUnia Association. A biologist by profession, but looking towards people and their perception of the environment.

 

Co-founder of Koalicja Ratujmy Rzeki/Save The Rivers Coalition (KRR), a social initiative for the protection of natural rivers in Poland, gathering the voices of ‘river stakeholders’ into one strong tone. Member of EEB water working group, Observer of International Commission for the Protection of the Odra River against Pollution. Co-creator and coordinator of the first Water Round Table in cooperation with the Polish Ministry of Environment (2009-2011). Engaged in creating a Partnership for the Baltic initiative (2007-2011). Particularly working in areas of transboundary rivers, water stakeholders inclusion and engagement, water conflicts, water democracy building. A supporter of NVC dialogue. She comes from her two parental organizations: Society of Friends of Ina and Gowienica rivers and EkoUnia Association. A biologist by profession, but looking towards people and their perception of the environment.

 

~ Let’s go with the river flow and learn from each other! ~

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