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July 18, 2012 / landscapeiskingston

Värmland, Sweden – Transfer visit on Flooding, Freight + Integrated Waterway Management and Planning

A 2 days  transfer visit on the themes of Flooding, Freight and Integrated Waterway Management and Planning was held in Karlstad, Värmland May 10- 11, 2011. Three Waterways Forward partners, Ronald Waterman (NL), Harri Lallukka (FI) and Juha Turtianen (FI), participated together with 15 regional stakeholders.  

Lake Vänern has experienced several flood events in the last decades. Especially serious was the one that hit the lake and some of its tributes during the autumn and winter 2000/2001. The two municipalities in Värmland, Karlstad and Arvika, were among those worst affected. The aim with the first day was to transfer the successful work with flood risk management that has been taken part in the two municipalities since then.   Johan Mannheimer and Karin de Beer from the County Administrative Board of Värmland (CABV) held seminars on the flood prevention work the county is working with, both in its daily work and in the two Interreg IVB projects SAWA and CPA, and the conflict between flooding measures and environmental protection.

WF group participated in a “Flood walk” in the river delta of Karlstad, organised by the Centre for Climate and Safety at Karlstad University. This field trip was combined with participants from the Interreg IVB project SAWA, which holds a transnational Master Course in flood risk management. The “Flood Walk” concept was created with aims of providing a more participatory and on site approach on flood related learning.

The afternoon was spent in Arvika municipality where Maria Doverhög presented their work with flood preventing. In mid November 2000, 1,500 meters of the Pallet Barrier were erected in two main areas of Arvika, the Strand Estate and a shopping centre.  Lake Glasfjorden rose 12cms a day, rising to over 3 meters above normal lake levels. The barrier protected the town from the damaging effects of flooding. The future plan is to work with flood protection in the strait and to build a concrete wall as a dam.

Shipping, in some form or other, has almost certainly taken place on LakeVänernas long as people have lived in the area. Today, around 2,700 freight vessels pass through the locks in Trollhät­tan each year. In total, more than 2.6 million tonnes of freight are handled every year in average on Lake Vänern and it has the potential to grow by the double.  Bertil Arvidsson from Bacab consulting (hired by CABV to write a report on the future possibilities for freight on Lake Vänern) presented the current freight situation on Lake Vänern and the future possibilities with Inland Waterway’s vessels.  Kenneth Filipsson from region Värmland continued the morning’s workshop by talking about “Lake Vänern as a maritime area”- a cooperation between 2 regions and 17 municipalities within five different areas: sustainable living, freight traffic, tourism, renewable energy and education/ R&D in Lake Vänern.

Lena Dybeg from Karlstadbus presented Värmland’s good practice – ‘the boat buses’. This started to run as test 2007 and have so far been a success. Last year, 2010, around 52 000 people (Karlstad municipality has around 85 000 inhabitants) took a tour on the river with this new public transportation. The boat buses are operating from May to September due to weather conditions. This season four boats are going to operate the public transportation and new stops are planned both in the city and in the archipelago, thus making the access to Lake Vänern easier both for locals and tourists.   The  afternoon was spent with a field trip on Lake Vänern by boat, going to the island Härö, to show the preserved cultural heritages on the island.

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