Excursion to the Ecological Station Neunzehnhain and Reservoir Management

by Yulia Mariska (EM40)

On 15th – 16th June 2017, the participants of the 40th UNEP/UNESCO/BMUB International Postgraduate Course on Environmental Management had the opportunity to visit the Ecological Station Neunzehnhain and learn more about reservoir management.  Located about 80 km south-west of Dresden in the “Ore Mountains”. First day, the group transferred to dam Neunzehnhain II guided by the Dam Administration Saxony.  The area of the dam are not populated and surrounded by almost 80% of forests as drinking water protection. The main reason is to keep the good water quality because the dam’s primary purpose is for  drinking water supply of the nearby located city of Chemnitz with a storage capacity of about 3 million cubic meters.

The second day started with a lecture about freshwater organism and quality indicators by Ms. Beesk (TU Dresden); in this session, the participants were equipped with microscopes to see some of the micro-organisms in the water sample and then continued to have get some explanation about water quality indicators in the reservoir Neunzehnhain II. The next session was guided by Dr. Paul (TU Dresden), he explained about the water quality and quantity management in reservoirs and how it can be used as a bio-manipulation tool to manage fish stocks.

After having lunch the excursion proceeded to dam Saidebach guided again by Dr. Paul for another session about land use in the catchment area, water and sediment treatment, catchment protection and climate change issues. The dam Saidebach like the dam Neunzehnhain II also functions as a drinking water reservoir with a capacity of 22 million cubic meters.

Ecological research station Neunzehnhain

About 80 km southwest of Dresden the TU is maintaining a small outpost: the ecological research station Neunzehnhain. Located in the middle of the forest nearby the Neunzehnhain dam, the station offers the possibility to facilitate skills and methods in the physical, chemical and biological investigation of water bodies. But first the group had a look at the dam. Completed in 1914, the dam’s primary purpose is the drinking water supply of the nearby located city of Chemnitz. As the quality of the reservoir is excellent, supposedly even the best water quality to be found in Saxony, the citizens of Chemnitz can really consider themselves fortunate. After passing the coping of the dam, the group entered the dam itself and learned about its functionality and about the measurements performed in the dam. The next day started with some microscoping lectures, before the group returned once more to the dam to be taught about different methods for the assessment of water quality.

(Photos: T. Karp)