River Skjern – Denmark, Flagship restoration measure

Arial view of the restored River Skjern


River Skjern is the 2nd largest river in Denmark and drains the western part of the peninsula Jutland. The river was channelized and wetlands in the floodplain were drained in 1960. The river was restored from 1999-2002. This project is the largest single restoration project in Northern Europe.

  • Typology: Mid-sized lowland river
  • Altitude: 20 m
  • Catchment area: 2,490 km²
  • Pressures before the restoration:
    • straightened river course
    • degradation of river bed
    • draining of wetlands
    • disruption of connection between river and wetlands
    • barriers
  • Restoration measures conducted:
    • re-meandering of main river and tributaries
    • re-creation of wetland and lake
    • removal of barriers
  • Length of restoration: 25 km