Aims of the life+ project

To reach the main goal of the project which is the protection and optimization of endangered animals and plants, the background activities of the project aim at reconnecting the Lippe and its floodplain.

Over the last centuries, the floodplains of the Lippe have undergone changes due to human actions. As a consequence, the water balance and the species assemblage in the floodplains and the streaming waters were influenced negatively. That is why many typical floodplain habitats are now gone or at least substantially endangered together with their inhabitants and vegetation.

Therefore, the aim of the finished project LIFE and the current project LIFE+ is the gradual renaturation of the Lippe and its floodplains. Even today, the Lippe floodplain landscape in the east of Hamm is the home of rare biotopes, animal and plant species: an important element of the European natural heritage. However, an optimization and some improvements still need to be done in this special protection area. Another goal of the project LIFE+ is not only to support the preservation of still existing typical landscapes and habitats as well as their flora and fauna but also to essentially support their development. The most important aim of the LIFE-Project was not only the preservation of the floodplain landscape, animal and plant species, but to assist in their progressive development.
On our way to reach these goals a variety of actions and measures are important to be taken, which are:

  • Natural rebuilding of the Lippe and its tributaries (i. e. removal of shoreline stabilization and river regulations, construction of flood channels as well as the extension of the river course)
  • Support more natural floodplain dynamics to increase the frequency of flooding
  • New installation of standing water bodies such as ponds, shallow ponds, which only temporarily hold water, and lakes   
  • Development of alluvial woodlands  
  • Partial re-water logging of meadows and willows
  • Changing to less intensive farming method
  • Ensuring good public relations combined with a reduction of disturbing factors

In order to achieve these aims, a varied range of actions and measures is introduced.