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Despite improvements in wastewater treatment systems, the impact of anthropogenic nutrient sources remains a key issue for the management of European lakes. The Water Framework Directive (WFD) provides a mechanism through which progress can be made on this issue. The Directive requires a classification of the ecological status of phytoplankton, which(More)
The Water Framework Directive (WFD), requires European Member States to assess the “ecological status” of surface waters. As part of this, many European countries have developed an ecological quality classification scheme for chlorophyll concentrations as a measure of phytoplankton abundance. The assessment of ecological quality must be based on the degree(More)
Defining the overall ecological status of lakes according to the Water Framework Directive (WFD) is to be partially based on the species composition of the aquatic macrophyte community. We tested three assessment methods to define the ecological status of the macrophyte community in response to a eutrophication pressure as reflected by total phosphorus(More)
Aquatic macrophytes are one of the biological quality elements in the Water Framework Directive (WFD) for which status assessments must be defined. We tested two methods to classify macrophyte species and their response to eutrophication pressure: one based on percentiles of occurrence along a phosphorous gradient and another based on trophic ranking of(More)
Phytoplankton data from 606 lakes were used to characterize indicator taxa of near-pristine reference conditions in clearwater and humic lowland lakes of Northern and Central Europe. Reference lakes were selected based on low pressure from catchment land-use, low population density and the absence of point sources. Reference lakes had low phytoplankton(More)
Halting and reversing the deterioration of aquatic ecosystems requires concerted action across state boundaries and administrative barriers. However, the achievement of common management objectives is jeopardised by different national quality targets and ambitions. The European Water Framework Directive requires that quality classifications are harmonised(More)
Phytoplankton constitutes a diverse array of short-lived organisms which derive their nutrients from the water column of lakes. These features make this community the most direct and earliest indicator of the impacts of changing nutrient conditions on lake ecosystems. It also makes them particularly suitable for measuring the success of restoration measures(More)
Data on phytoplankton, macrophytes, benthic invertebrates and fish from more than 2000 lakes in 22 European countries were used to develop and test metrics for assessing the ecological status of European lakes as required by the Water Framework Directive. The strongest and most sensitive of the 11 metrics responding to eutrophication pressure were(More)
Eleven European countries participated in an exercise to harmonise diatom-based methods used for status assessment in lakes. Lakes were divided into low, medium and high alkalinity types for this exercise. However, it was not possible to perform a full intercalibration on low alkalinity lakes due to the short gradient and confounding factors. Values of the(More)
The concept of "reference conditions" describes the benchmark against which current conditions are compared when assessing the status of water bodies. In this paper we focus on the establishment of reference conditions for European lakes according to a phytoplankton biomass indicator--the concentration of chlorophyll-a. A mostly spatial approach (selection(More)