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Fish Safe Pump Can Save Millions Of Eel And Salmon

Salmonids Welfare

EU - Millions of eel, salmon and other fish can be saved by installing new innovative water pumps at pumping stations all over Europe. Dutch Company Norit Nijhuis invented a pump which allows fish to pass these barriers unharmed, thus preventing massive slaughtering of fish during their migration each year.

The first new pump will be installed in a pumping station near Amsterdam next week. Independent testing results show that 100 percent of eel and other scaleless fish can pass the blades unharmed and 97 percent of the scaly fish. Installing these pumps at pumping stations can bring down mortality rates of migrating fish spectacularly. Installation can be done quick and without major adjustments.

Experts from the Netherlands and other countries around the North Sea like Norway, Germany, Sweden, the UK, Belgium and Denmark are gathered in Amsterdam this week to discuss the problem of large scale fish mortality at pumping stations. Amsterdam based water company Waternet hopes to get European funding to find a solution to the problem. At this moment many threatened species of migrating fish get slaughtered at the pumping stations and experts think it may cost years to find a solution.

Norit Nijhuis states that the solution is all ready there and can be used everywhere. Their pump is shaped in a way that fish can pass the pumping stations safely. "We can install this pump - which is developed in association with FishFlow Innovation - at many bottle-necks, without pumping stations having to be reconstructed. The pump can use existing power installations," manager Robert Schuuring of Norit Nijhuis states.

In 2007, the 106 year old company was taken over by Norit, the world's leading company on water purification. Menno Holterman, member of the Board of Directors of Norit NV hopes that governments will put a stop to the fish mortality. "This example shows we have the technique for a sustainable solution, but people are not pushed to implement it fast enough," he says.