RiverWatch – Society for the protection of rivers

  • RiverWatch is a society for the protection of rivers. Our ambition is to conserve the last unimpaired rivers as well as their flooding areas.
  • RiverWatch engages globally against projects that destroy rivers, particularly dam projects.
  • RiverWatch is a campaigning organisation; that is, we act in opposition to certain projects and promote public awareness.

We consider ourselves a platform for all those who care about rivers.

Our ambitions
RiverWatch wants to draw attention to the value of rivers; their beauty and their importance to flora and fauna, as well as to humans. Most of all, we attempt to stop or mitigate the spree of destruction faced by streams.

Why rivers?
Rivers are our Earth’s lifeline. The majority of species can be found in or by streams. They are hot spots for biodiversity.

What is true for all other species is also true for human beings. Our history is closely connected with rivers. Early high cultures such as the Sumerians in Mesopotamia (Euphrates and Tigris) and the Egyptians (Nile) developed in river valleys.

Today, rivers count amongst the most endangered habitats on Earth – if not THE most endangered habitat of all. In order to accommodate river navigation, flood control, industrial parks, agriculture, housing developments, etc. rivers are being destroyed. However, what puts them most at risk is the construction of dams.

Rivers need a stronger lobby: while numerous NGOs advocate exclusively for the protection of rain forests, oceans, or mountains, hardly anyone concern themselves with rivers on a global scale. The only two exceptions are International Rivers based in Berkeley (USA) and their small equivalent in France (European Rivers).

Many thanks to longtime partner and supporter of Riverwatch, the Manfred-Hermsen-Stiftung based in Bremen, Germany.

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Fritz Schiemer


Ulrich Eichelmann

Organisational structure
First chairman: Fritz Schiemer
Second chairman: Wolfram Graf
CEO: Ulrich Eichelmann