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The Oder needs advocates and stewards

- the Oder needs you!


We stand for a wild Oder and are strongly against the Oder expansion plan. Here we share an inspiring short film, Save the Oder, from Anja Freyhoff and Thomas Uhlmann. The premiere of the film took place in KuNaKu’s Southwest hall on August 21st, 2021 as part of the “Offene Höfe Oderberg.”

Aktionen für eine Wilde Oder

Foto von Thomas Uhlmann und Anja Freyhoff


Here we share more inspiring video footage: a short trailer from the phenomenal animal videographer, Stephan Schulz. Schulz gives us a rare glimpse into the beautiful and wild nature of the “unteres Odertal National Park.”



Kleines Bot auf der Oder

What are the Oder expansion plans and why are they problematic?:


Do you support increased drought and potential forest fires in Brandenburg?
Of course not! Then please speak out against the Oder expansion plan (Oderausbau) and let's save one of Europe's most natural rivers.

Brandenburg has already been deeply affected by climate change and has some of the driest regions in Germany. Forest officials have been warning residents over the past several years of the consequent rising dangers of forest fires.

According to an exhaustive study conducted by IGB (Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology & Innland Fisheries), implementation of the Oder expansion plan, will lower the water table (thereby intensifying drought conditions) and irreversibly destroy wildlife habitats.

The Oderausbau is completely backwards in terms of our current understanding of the importance of intact ecologies, especially for migrating species. It is completely backwards in terms of doing anything about climate change. The loss and damage caused by the plan completely outweighs any benefit. Long term there can only be economic losses, not gain.

Here is the policy summary from IGB:
The River Oder is one of the last relatively near-natural large rivers in Europe. Yet the government of the Repub-lic of Poland is planning to develop the River Oder with funding by the World Bank, the EU, and the Council of Europe Development Bank. While Germany has also actually committed to the development in a bilateral agreement, the specific German implementation plans and timelines have not been made public yet. Already now, one thing is for sure: the measures will irreversibly destroy valuable habitats of many rare and endangered animal and plant species on both the Polish and the German side of the river. The plans violate EU law in several respects and endanger not only the environment, but also agriculture on both sides of the River Oder. This conclusion is reached by researchers from the Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB), Germany’s largest freshwater research centre. The researchers have contributed to the previous planning process by conducting scientific studies, pre-paring expert opinions and providing specialist advice. In this IGB Policy Brief, the authors now urgently recom-mend that the European Commission, the Federal Government and the Brandenburg State Government take further diplomatic and legal action against the Polish development project and also stop the development plans in Germany. Instead, all levels of government are urged to support the protection of the River Oder as an ecological focus area.

What we are doing:

We are actively involved in organizing “Save the Oder” actions and events. Currently we are gathering forces to organize a Save Oder music, art and film festival. You are welcome to help out in this effort. Liz is also organizing regular, participatory gatherings, called “Sacred Dances for the Oder.” If you are interested in helping the Oder or have ideas yourself as to how we can protect the Oder, please send us an email at .


What you can do:

  • Write to the government, the EU and World Bank, urging them not to fund this project and to support instead a plan of rewilding.
  • Join Rewilding Oder Delta,
  • Join a mailing list (contact Sascha Maier, 
  • Join us (Liz Erber and KuNaKu) in one of our Sacred Dances on the Oder, recognizing the sacred values of rivers and life; happening regularly at a river bank near you (on the Oder).