In September 2007, the ICPDR won the Australian $300,000 (approx. 180,000 Euro) `International Thiess Riverprize 2007´ for excellence in water management in the Danube River Basin. Launched in 1999, the Riverprize has evolved into one of the most highly regarded and richest international water management awards. “The Riverprize identifies the world’s best practices in water management, preservation and restoration,” said Martin Albrecht, Chair of the International Riverfoundation which awards the prize.
One year later in September 2008, the International Riverfoundation launched `River Journeys´, a stunning coffee table book about the human history of award-winning river restoration projects worldwide, including those of the ICPDR.
“With this book, the International Riverfoundation recognises the founders and winners from ten years of the Thiess Riverprize – the world’s foremost prize in river management – for their vision, courage, commitment and their accomplishments,” says the International Riverfoundation. “Each watershed group has shown true passion and dedication to changing the health of their riverine environment, creeks and wetlands and has accomplished major long-term improvements.”
“After ten years of driving river restoration worldwide, we feel an even greater sense of urgency to address the global freshwater crisis,” says Mr Albrecht. “In this context, the stories of those who are achieving the world’s best practices in river management become more remarkable, even more compelling.”
Within a decade, 18 river restoration groups have joined the alumni of the Thiess Riverprize, each one of them representing an amazing and unique river journey. Winners have built bridges across political borders and ideological divides, such as with the Alexander River shared by Israel and Palestine. Their work has been ground-breaking in terms of policy and implementation, such as with the Murray Wetlands Working Group in Australia. They have also forged strong transnational collaborations, such as with the Mekong and Danube rivers, and have overcome cultural and language barriers.
“It brings the ICPDR great pleasure that we are included as “The Blue Danube: A Blueprint for Collaboration” in this insightful and colourful book,” says Philip Weller, ICPDR Executive Secretary.
The International Riverfoundation, a Brisbane-based international NGO, is at the heart of a global movement driving river restoration projects around the world. With this book, it hopes to motivate more corporations and individuals to support its programs.
`River Journeys´ is available for AU $39.95. Order online at www.riverfoundation.org.au.