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Indicator Assessment Nutrients in freshwater (CSI 020) - Assessment published Oct 2012
Average nitrate concentrations in European groundwaters increased from 1992 to 1998, but have declined again since 2004. The average nitrate concentration in European rivers decreased by approximately 11% between 1992 and 2010 (from 2.5 to 2.2 mg/l N), reflecting the effect of measures to reduce agricultural inputs of nitrate as well as improvement in wastewater treatment. Average orthophosphate concentrations in European rivers have decreased markedly over the last two decades, being more than halved between 1992 and 2010 (54% decrease). Also average lake phosphorus concentration decreased over the period 1992-2010 (by 31%), the major part of the decrease occurring in the beginning of the period, but is still ongoing. The decrease in phosphorus concentrations reflects both improvement in wastewater treatment and reduction in phosphorus in detergents. Overall, reductions in the levels of freshwater nutrients over the last two decades primarily reflect improvements in wastewater treatment. Emissions from agriculture continue to be a significant source.
Located in Data and maps Indicators Nutrients in freshwater
Figure Phosphorus concentrations in rivers (orthophosphate) between 1992 and 2010 in different sea regions of Europe
The sea region data series are calculated as the average of annual mean data from river monitoring stations in each sea region. The data thus represents rivers or river basins draining into that particular sea. Only complete series after inter/extrapolation are included (see indicator specification). The number of river monitoring stations per sea region is given in parentheses.
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
Figure Annual average nitrate concentration in rivers
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
Figure WISE River basin districts (RBDs)
Top: The geographic area of some RBDs span more than one country (such as the Danube) and these are known as International RBDs
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
Press Release Europe’s bathing waters continue to improve
Ninety-four per cent of bathing sites in the European Union meet minimum standards for water quality, according to the European Environment Agency's annual report on bathing water quality in Europe. Water quality is excellent at 78 % of sites and almost 2 % more sites meet the minimum requirements compared to last year's report.
Located in Media News
Figure Nitrate concentrations in rivers between 1992 and 2008 in different geographical regions of Europe.
The data series per region are calculated as the average of the annual mean for river monitoring stations in the region. Only complete series after inter/extrapolation are included (see indicator specification). The number of river monitoring stations included per geographical region is given in parentheses.
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
Daviz Visualization Distribution of ecological status or potential of classified rivers, lakes, coastal and transitional waters, by count of water bodies
Located in Data and maps Data visualisations
Figure Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD5) and total ammonium concentrations in rivers between 1992 and 2009
Concentrations are expressed as the average of annual mean concentrations. Up to 3-year gaps of missing values have been interpolated or extrapolated. Only complete series with no missing values after this interpolation/extrapolation are included. The number of river monitoring stations included in the analysis is noted in brackets. BOD7 data has been recalculated into BOD5 data.
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
Figure Total ammonium concentrations in rivers between 1992 and 2009 in different geographical regions of Europe
Concentrations are expressed as the average of annual mean concentrations. Up to 3-year gaps of missing values have been interpolated or extrapolated. Only complete series with no missing values after this interpolation/extrapolation are included (see indicator specification). The number of river monitoring stations included in the analysis per geographic region is noted in brackets.
Located in Data and maps Maps and graphs
GIS Map Application WISE SoE Ammonium in Rivers
The map shows the mean annual concentrations of total ammonium (TA) as mg/L N-NH4in European rivers measured at WISE SoE River monitoring stations from 1992 till 2011. All data are annual means. For most countries these are based on measurements over the whole year, but for some countries the annual mean actually represents only the growing season (due to ice cover in winter).The purpose of the map is to provide an overview of the annual concentrations of the total ammonium/ammonium in rivers across Europe and to enable viewer to make comparisons of the values in European countries or individual monitoring sites. NH4 is the empirical formula of the ammonium ion which, in water, is an important nitrogenous fertilizer for aquatic plants. In excess ammonium can give rise to problems because it contributes indirectly to BOD by reducing Dissolved Oxygen concentrations in water. It also forms ammonium hydroxide in water and is extremely toxic to fish and aquatic life at elevated pH levels.Total ammonium concentrations are normally increased as a result of discharges from waste water treatment plants, industrial effluents and agricultural runoff. It exerts a demand on oxygen in water as it is transformed to oxidised forms of nitrogen. In addition it is toxic to aquatic life at certain concentrations in relation to water temperature, salinity and pH. It can also pollute water used for drinking and bathing. In less detailed scale data is aggregated by country and pie charts are displayed. In more detailed scale individual stations appear in shape of triangles. Historical data (from 1992 on) can be displayed and viewed with time slider tool.
Located in Data and maps Interactive maps
European Environment Agency (EEA)
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