The Open Rivers Programme is Launched!
picture of glass eels
Bringing Eels Back to the River Thames
August 18, 2021
Salmon School at COP26
November 19, 2021

Thanks to a €42.5 million investment over six years from Arcadia, the Open Rivers Programme Officially launched on 8th October 2021.

The mission of the Open Rivers Programme is to restore endangered European rivers by supporting interventions that lead to the removal of dams and the restoration of river flow and biodiversity. Its vision is for free-flowing rivers with healthy, diverse and connected ecosystems across Europe, which are enjoyed, valued, and protected by the communities that depend on them.

The programme is managed by Stichting European Open Rivers Programme, a charitable foundation, registered in the Netherlands, and supported by a Programme Advisory Group to ensure its strategy is aligned with other similar initiatives dedicated to river restoration in Europe. Members include:

  • Dam Removal Europe
  • European Centre for River Restoration
  • European Environment Agency
  • Global Water Partnership
  • International Union for Conservation of Nature
  • Swansea University

The Open Rivers Programme will offer grants to:

1. Support the removal of small dams (up to 2 metres in height) in rivers.

2. Support essential preparatory work that will result in a dam removal.

3. Support the dam removal movement so that dam removal becomes more widely accepted and implemented in order to restore more rivers across Europe.

The programme will offer its first grants in February 2022 by supporting a selection of “ready to go” dam removal projects that have been identified during its preparatory phase. It will also release a new call for Expressions of Interest on 12th November 2021, with projects due to start from May 2022.

Be the first to receive important news from the programme by signing up to news updates.

For more information on the Open Rivers Programme, please contact Jack Foxall, Executive Director.

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