The LIFE Network Danube Plus project

VERBUND and its partners are improving the quality of the waterbodies along the Danube between the power plants at Altenwörth and Greifenstein with the LIFE Network Danube Plus project.

Lower Austria’s longest fish bypass planned

Location of the new fish bypass at Altenwörth
Location of the new fish bypass and measures on the old course of the river.
The planned fish bypass will be Lower Austria’s longest fish bypass at more than 12.5 km in length. The fish bypass connects land restoration projects on the Danube and its tributaries, thereby boosting the diversity of species in the Danube. In total, the work will involve the movement of 575,000 cubic metres of gravel and fine sediment. As the work is taking place on the floodplain and no lorries of excavated material leave the project area, the impact of traffic on the settlement area will remain minimal. The excavated materials will be used in the area of the old river course.
In addition to the fish bypass, VEBUND is improving the bathing quality of the old course of the Danube at Altenwörth in cooperation with the market municipality of Kirchberg am Wagram. An artificial biotope is being constructed on the left bank of the old course. The idea behind this “constructed wetland” is that the water should clean itself. The excess quantity of nutrients is filtered out and reduced. This is intended to reduce the growth of algae to a natural level. A model for the water quality of the old course at the Danube power plant Greifenstein.
Site map with overview of the Gießgang at Greifenstein
Planned fish passes in the Gießgang at Greifenstein supplement the package of measures.
During construction of the Greifenstein power plant, the neighbouring wetland was kept from drying out by a system of artificial dams. This "Gießgang" is today a protected area with a wealth of typical species of animals and plants. With a total of four ramps, the Gießgang is barrier-free for fish. This improves the connection from the Greifenstein reservoir area with that of Altenwörth.
Flag with EU LIFE logo and yellow duck

Partners in the project

The project "LIFE Network Danube Plus" is supported by the following finance partners: the EU within the scope of the LIFE+ programme, the Ministry of Sustainability and Tourism, the provincial government of Lower Austria and the provincial fishing association of Lower Austria. Also involved are the companies entitled to purchase electricity at the Greifenstein and Altenwörth power plants: EVN, Wien Energie, Energie AG, KELAG and VKW.