The Rhine river: Lifeline, transportation way and origin of legends

The Rhine is the backbone of the European economy and provides millions of people with a basis for life. It is linked to European industry, history and culture unlike any other river.

Rheingrafik_final.jpg Wer oder was regelt den Schiffsverkehr?

On click: Information along the river course

In the interactive map you can explore exciting facts and figures about the Rhine.

From Basel via Ludwigshafen to Mainz, continuing past Koblenz and Cologne, all the way up to Rotterdam, the Rhine is home to numerous economic sites, which line the banks of the river like pearls on a necklace. Initially, it was the textile industry which first discovered the benefits of the Rhine, closely followed by the chemical industry. Nowadays, some of the largest steel, automotive, textile and chemical plants in the world line the banks of the river, with canals connecting the Rhine to the Baltic Sea, the Mediterranean See and the Atlantic Ocean. 

Without the Rhine, industrial production in western Europe would collapse, as industrial corporations not only use the shipping lanes to turn around raw materials and products, but also use the river water as a supply of both cooling water and process water. And the Rhine is also essential for generating energy, as can be seen by the numerous coal, nuclear and hydroelectric power plants.

Nowadays, the entire catchment area of the Rhine, from Switzerland to the Netherlands, comprises around 60 million people across a total of nine different countries. For many of these people, the Rhine is the basis of life, it ensures jobs, and also provides opportunities to relax. Both from a political and economic standpoint, great efforts are being undertaken to maintain the ecosystem and flood protection system of the Rhine and continue improving them further.

Explore the Rhine!

What logistic impact does the river have for BASF? Which effects did the low water levels have in 2018? What is the purpose of a "Düker"?  Apart from answers to these questions you can find suggestions for excursions as well as pictures and films.  

Rhine stories: A historian and a logistics expert exchange their perspectives on the Rhine. (German)