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At the same time, though, there may be an increase in inland waterway transport, in view of EU targets to shift part of long-distance road freight to rail and waterborne transport (see Commission White Paper / Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area (EC, 2011)). Future plans for inland navigation in Europe however need to take account of the changing climatic conditions. Intense recent droughts in 2018 led to very low river flows which made parts of major European waterways such as the Rhine and the Danube unnavigable for larger cargo barges.

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