AMBER – how they are changing rivers across Europe

The European Wilderness Society recently attended the week long Balkan River Defence event for a day. While listening to presentations from the speakers the European Wilderness Society got more information on AMBER (Adaptive Management Barriers in European Rivers) and an app they have developed.

Please also read: Meeting Balkan River Defence

The mission of AMBER is to improve habitat connectivity and biodiversity in rivers, while decreasing fragmentation and minimising ecological impacts of river barriers. Through the app critical barriers and obstacles can be identified. This will help improve the connectivity and restore waterways throughout Europe.

To do this some of their objectives are:

  • Creating the first assessment of stream connectivity across Europe to highlight where restoration is most needed.
  • Developing holistic framework and tools to guide the restoration of local river ecosystems.
  • Provide opportunities for real time monitoring utilising citizen science

AMBER intends to accomplish these objectives through the development of models, tools and tool-kits which will inform and help relevant parties, such as river managers and hydro power companies. Through this, AMBER hopes to improve energy security and rural economies, while protecting biodiversity in rivers and decreasing river fragmentation.

Where does the app come in?

To help meet this objectives, AMBER have developed the App “Barrier Tracker” to utilise citizen science. The European Wilderness Society believes it will be a useful tool during our frequent trips to audit Wilderness. An example where we have already been able to contribute to the ever growing atlas of barriers is our audit of the WILDRiver Tagliamento where we discovered a previously unrecorded river barrier.

Please also read this: A victory for Mura river

On the AMBER website there is a brilliant Tracked Barrier Map, this shows the currently recorded river obstacles across Europe. Further you can also help verify recently submitted evidence in their Photo Classification Tool. Further, citizen science can make a big difference and you can help by downloading the app which is available on Android and Apple. Overall, AMBER, with its innovative ideas and fantastic app are a promising hope to help the future success of waterways throughout Europe.

If you want to help our fight in saving the WILDRivers of Europe please consider donating here!

One thought on “AMBER – how they are changing rivers across Europe

  • River connectivity is important. On the other hand, barriers help native crayfish survive against crayfish plague spread by invasive crayfish species. This should be considered before the barrier is destroyed.

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