History of a river landscape.
The Romans called the river Inn AENUS, which means foaming. Untill the middle of the 19th century it was a free-wheeling river as ist came down from the Swiss Alps. At that time its tributaries branched far, its course curved, its banks changed. It frequently flooded the valleys it traversed, making them dangerous for human use. To make the broad valley of the lower river Inn useful for agriculture the river banks were straightened and canalized to protect the land against high-water flooding.
The changings soon deepened the river, stripped soil away, lowered the water table, thus also destroying the riverine forests.
The construction of dams for hydro electric power stopped the erosion, by filling up storage-lakes, stabilized the water table and helped restore riverine forests. The hydro electric plant was completed at Ering in 1942, it helped restore habitat for rare plants and animals.
Europareservat Unterer Inn:
German law protected the area at the lower river Inn in 1972 as Conservation Area. Austria followed in 1978. In 1979 the European Council for Birdshelter honored it with the predicate Europareservat (European Nature Reserve). It containes 4 continuous storage-lakes. In the future it is supposed to include the riverine forests to the conservation area. Ramsar Convention:
In 1972, in the Iranian city of Ramsar several countries signed an agreement to protect important international wetlands that shelters to waterfowls and shore birds. The Ramsar Convention obligates the nations who signed the agreement to honour its terms and to protect and preserve the Ramsar areas.