The first Restor Hydro day took place on Wednesday, June 11th at Aleksandras Stulginskis University, Kaunas-Akademija, central part of the country. The main organiser of this event was the Lithuanian Hydropower Association (LHA) in collaboration with Water and Land Management Faculty. The event was held under the auspices of the Water Problem Council of National Academy of Science and Lithuanian Association of Land Management and Hydraulic engineers.
The seminar was honoured by J. Imbrasas, former MP of the European Parliament, S. Jackūnas, Director of Ukmergė municipality, A. Degutis, Deputy Director of Cultural Heritage Department, assistants of MPs of the National Parliament. The event brought together more than 70 participants -the owners of water mills and SHP plants, cultural heritage and environmental protection leading experts, researchers, engineering consultants, farmers, representatives of rural communities and NGOs, and students. In total 11 oral presentations were presented by the project implementers and invited speakers.
- Punys, the Chairman of LHA and person in charge of the Restor Hydro project in the country, described main activities of the project and its current outcomes. Representatives of University, E. Kasiulis and G.Viciene, introduced to participants the web based RESTOR Hydro Map and guidelines on how to establish small and micro hydropower cooperatives with a community shares ownership in the country. A practical implementation of this was demonstrated in the presentation by V. Petkevicius, Director of Kesiai association, initiated and supported by the project. This entity currently is undertaking the renovation of an historic mill aimed to retrofit it for power generation and construction of a small hydropower plant on existing dam. G. Peckaitienė (the Chairwomen of Maslauskiskių water mill foundation) detailed difficulties for getting the consent for reconstruction of the historic weir. This process has been going for more than 20 years. Prof. J. Bucas of Kaunas University of Technology spoke of small stream hydraulic installations for public attractiveness. There were also presentations considering water wheels, mills heritage, environmental and technical issues and recommendations for repowering them. Hydraulic laboratories dealing with studies of small hydro structures were also visited by the attendees.
At the end of the event a round table discussion moderated by Prof. Lukianas (Water Problem Council) took place and declaration addressed to the relevant authorities of the country was unanimously approved. It calls for amending National Water Law in order to facilitate the reconstruction of historic water mills.
RESTOR HYDRO video with Lithuanian subtitles about SHP in Europe and benefits of repowering historic water mills was watched during coffee breaks. The participants received project leaflets and other relevant material.
The event has been promoted through various channels: Web portals (University, Lithuanian Association of Land Management and Hydraulic engineers: http://lzhis.lt/malunu-dienos-atgarsiai/), articles (e.g., Land Management and Hydraulic Engineering),
The seminar programme, speakers’ presentations and other relevant information (in Lithuanian) can be assessed from the website of Lithuanian Hydropower Association: http://www.hidro.lt/naujienos.php