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Pressures and Measures in the RBMPs with a Focus on Agriculture

Pressures and Measures in the RBMPs with a Focus on Agriculture

In this project, Ecologic Institute compiled and evaluated information on the environmental effectiveness of agricultural measures used in River Basin Management Plans. The assessment took place in the context of the "Comparative Study of Pressures and Measures in the Major River Basin Management Plans in the EU".

The Water Framework Directive (WFD) required Member States to report their first River Basin Management Plans (RBMPs) by March 2010. The European Commission (EC) has been assessing the compliance of RBMPs against the provisions of the WFD and carrying out a "bottom up" assessment of the plans. At the same time, the EC commissioned a "Comparative Study of Pressures and Measures in the Major River Basin Management Plans in the EU" entailing a "top down" assessment of the RBMPs on certain topics that merit a deeper analysis. In this comparative study, the analysis builds on the information available within RBMPs and is complemented by other sources in order to broaden the scope of the analysis.

The following topics are examined:

  • governance and legal aspects,
  • development and analysis of appropriate methodologies,
  • integration of water policy into related sectors,
  • WFD programmes of measures,
  • economic aspects,
  • innovation and technology.

The study has the following objectives:

  • to gather, in a structured way, information on various elements related to river basin management and
  • to analyse and compare the collected information in order
  • to provide conclusions at the European level.

The outcome of this comparative study supported the 2012 Blueprint to Safeguard Europe’s Waters.

One of the tasks of the study evaluated agricultural measures used in RBMPs, their environmental effectiveness and barriers and opportunities for their implementation. Moreover, Ecologic Institute provided organizational and conceptual support to the River Basin Network.  The results of the task will be included in the future WISE database of measures which will also cover other pressures including hydromorphological alterations, drinking water protection, water abstraction and mining. The results of the study contribute to improved knowledge on the effectiveness of agricultural measures implemented in EU river basins.

European Commission, Directorate-General Environment (DG Environment)
Water Research Centre (WRc), United Kingdom
ABP Marine Environmental Research (ABP MER), United Kingdom
ACTeon Environment (ACTeon), France
Antea Group (Antea), Netherlands
Arcadis Nederland, Netherlands
DHI, Denmark
Ecosphere Technologies (Ecosphere), United States
Fresh Thoughts (Fresh Thoughts), Austria
Milieu, Belgium
Aarhus University, National Enviromental Research Institute (NERI), Denmark
SIEco (SIEco), Slovenia
TYPSA, Spain
Vituki, Hungary
October 2011 to October 2012
Project ID
Water, Monitoring, Water Framework Directive, Agriculture, River Basin Management Plans, Europe