Herausforderung und Chance


24. / 25. JUNI 2009, BONN


Over the decades the Rhine has become tremendously important as a waterway. In terms of volume of traffi c and provision of transport, it is by far the most important waterway in Europe. As a transport route that is both competitive and environment-friendly, the Rhine occupies an important place in the economy.

Not least because of the occasionally extremely high and low water conditions in recent years on the Rhine and on other rivers, climate change has become a topical subject in the debate on transport policy.

But what are the effects of climate change on the Rhine as a waterway and as a natural area?

What are the long-term prospects for navigation on inland waterways in respect of climate change and its possible effects on the Rhine as a waterway?

How can navigation on the Rhine adjust to climate change and its possible consequences?

Although climate research has already made progress in the global context, further research is still necessary to be able to understand changes in the regional climate and their effects on river areas. Even at this stage, therefore, the development of target-oriented strategies for dealing with climate change in a reasonable manner is an important task for national and international policymakers in respect of transport and inland navigation.

The CCNR’s 2009 Congress takes up this challenge, by offering representatives of scientific, economic, environmental and political circles the possibility of fi nding out at first hand about current trends and the results of climate research, and on the state of debate on transport policy. On the basis of research being carried out in the CCNR’s Member States, the Congress will pay particular attention to possible options for handling navigation on the Rhine in relation to climate change, and in doing so will give impetus to further discussion on the topic.

The Congress should also provide the inland navigation sector with possibilities for contributing further to the protection of the climate – for example, by reducing CO2 emissions – which will reinforce and enhance its position as an environment- and climate-friendly supplier of transport.