Symposium in Fribourg, CH

On 27th June 2017, SPARE Partners and Observers from Austria and Switzerland participated in a symposium entitled: "Cooperation in the River Catchment. Trade-Off Case Studies – Challenges and Solutions" from the Water Agenda 21, which took place in Fribourg, CH. 

Our society places numerous demands on water resources and water bodies: the use of water for drinking water supply, food production and energy supply; maintaining the good quality of surface and groundwater and the ecological functions of lakes and streams; protection from the dangers of floods to preserve human life, usable land and assets. In a single water body, these requirements can overlap, leading to conflicting objectives. Extending the view to the entire catchment area can help us find solutions.

In 2011, the Water Agenda 21 – a Swiss information and knowledge exchange platform for water-related topics - published the guiding principle of catchment area management. Through regional coordination, transparent evaluation of pros and cons and clear prioritization, an efficient and goal-oriented water management is possible. Numerous Swiss water management actors developed basic principles and instruments in order to show how, by means of an anticipatory regional planning of the water resources, water flow conflicts can be approached and avoided at an early stage.

The symposium gave the SPARE team insights into Swiss water management approaches and the opportunity to discuss SPARE relevant topics with various thematic experts. The symposium also provided room for the project partners from Austria and Switzerland to talk about the further development of the SPARE Pilot Case Study site in Switzerland – the river Inn within the Engadine region.

For further information about the symposium and to download the conference transcript (in German or French language), please visit the following link: www.wa21.ch/de/NewsAgenda/Fachtagungen-WA21/2017-Zielkonflikte

written by Renate Polt and Susanne Muhar

Picture:  Rolf Weingartner and Susanne Muhar