Environmental Flow Assessment of the Transboundary River Rur

General information

Client: District government of Cologne
Location: Germany
Project duration: 2018 - ongoing
Key characteristics: EU Water Framework Directive, ecological flow assessments, hydraulic and water quality modelling

Project description

The aim of the project is the river restoration of the River Rur as a transboundary river between Belgium, Germany and The Netherlands. The driver for nature-based solutions is the EU Water Framework Directive in which a good ecological status or good ecological potential is requested. Low flow conditions and hydromorphology as limiting factors for achieving the ecological objectives need to be considered alongside flood mitigation and measures to be developed (pre-feasibility assessment). In the framework of a participation process the measure scenarios are discussed and further developed. Relevant actors are industry, nature conservation and environmental organizations as well as competent government authorities.

The project is carried out jointly by SYDRO, Umweltbüro Essen and Limnoplan.

Within the project, SYDRO is particularly responsible for the modeling. 1D modelling of water temperatures are carried out using the software TALSIM-NG. Hydraulic calculations are carried out using the software HYDRO_AS-2D.


  • Inventory taking of current discharge-related conditions of the River Rur
  • Assessment of ecological requirements
  • Hydraulic and water quality modelling
  • Determination of discharge-related deficits
  • Development of measures to achieve the good status according to the EU Water Framework Directive
  • Participation-process to discuss alternative measure scenarios


  • Hydraulic and water quality modelling
  • Communication with stakeholders (participative process)
  • Integrated river basin management
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