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Impact of the European Water framework directive on knowledge of biodiversity Impact of the European Water framework directive on knowledge of biodiversity

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Author(s): Christine Argillier and Mario Lepage

Journal: Sciences Eaux & Territoires : la Revue du IRSTEA
ISSN 2109-3016

Volume: 2011;
Issue: 03bis;
Start page: 84;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: WATER FRAMEWORK DIRECTIVE | AQUATIC ENVIRONMENT | BIODIVERSITY

ABSTRACT
The European Water framework directive requires observation and monitoring of certain biological communities to assess the ecological status of aquatic environments. How does the WFD contribute to knowledge and evaluation of aquatic biodiversity? What may be the results in terms of monitoring?The concept of biodiversity is complex and difficult to describe in an exhaustive manner. The Water Framework Directive (WFD), through its aquatic ecosystem monitoring network, aims to assess the ecological and chemical status of water bodies. This assessment requires observations on certain biological communities in a definite number of European sites representing continental, transitional and coastal water bodies. Consequently, the WFD contributes to improving knowledge on biodiversity. Nevertheless, genetic diversity and some communities are clearly not targeted and the monitoring networks are not well designed to assess changes in biodiversity. However, we may expect improvements in scientific knowledge of ecosystems and in the monitoring programmes that will make possible better convergence of environmental objectives.
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