Eldbäcken is a bypass channel located next to Eldforsen's power plant in River Västerdalälven in Sweden. Construction
of a new power plant with a new dam at Eldforsen's power plant
was completed in 2011. Legally Fortum had no need to release water in the old
river bed, but after discussions with the local residents, sport fishermen and the municipality, Fortum decided voluntarily that the old
river bed would be supplied with water and a bypass channel in the form
of a bio channel would be created.
Project enhancing the biodiversity
channel is a more diverse
version of a nature-like bypass channel with the
idea that various animal and plant species, not only fish, can establish
themselves in the channel. In traditional bypass channels the main purpose is usually
to enable fish migration. The project of Eldbäcken includes
the construction of the bio channel, design of suitable habitats, and research
studies on the establishment of different animal and plant species in the
The bio channel has
a head of 5 m and a length of 500 m. To make the flow as natural as
possible, the intake of the bio channel is constructed to allow a variable flow
regime. The channel is constructed with different
environments, such as pools with low water velocity, islands and flood plains.
is unique in Sweden and will employ researchers from various universities for
years. These studies contribute to various fields such as benthos, beach
vegetation, large mussels, reptiles, fish, hydrology and flood fields. The project continues in 2014 with the focus on introducing and creating habitats for the endangered freshwater pearl mussel.