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Coherence and inconsistency of European instruments for integrated river basin management
Department of Geography , University of Bonn , Bonn , Germany.
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Centre for Climate and Safety.
2013 (English)In: International Journal of River Basin Management, ISSN 1571-5124, E-ISSN 1814-2060, Vol. 11, 139-152 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Large rivers are particularly under pressure due to multiple uses which often have severe impacts on ecosystems, or water quality and flow. Conflicting aims and a lack of integration and cooperation in planning and management are not beneficial to sustainable management. Important elements of integrated river basin management (IRBM) include both water quality aspects and floodplain and flood risk management. On the other hand, land use and land use planning are also both of great importance for sustainable river management. However, water management and land use planning are generally treated as two distinct issues in planning procedures and decision-making processes. Even water quality and flood risk issues are often handled by different authorities. Integrated management of transnational river basins is even more complicated and difficult. In Europe, there is a range of relevant Directives such as the Water Framework Directive, Floods Directive and Habitat Directive. This paper illustrates how these legal and planning instruments influence the IRBM of large rivers. It analyses the potential synergies of the goals outlined in the directives and various related measures. Coherent but also inconsistent aspects of IRBM are identified against six different dimensions: political intention, legal, geographical, management, socio-economic and sustainability. The analysis shows potentials for synergies but also potential inconsistencies. We show that directives must be carefully coordinated to ensure coherent management and that synergies and site-specific goals, such as target areas, are important for sustainable management. Possible methodologies are described. IRBM can be considered as one possible approach towards sustainable development by coordinating different policies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2013. Vol. 11, 139-152 p.
Keyword [en]
Integrated river basin management, European directives, coherence of management, water quality, flood risk management, sustainable development
National Category
Geosciences, Multidisciplinary
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-31015DOI: 10.1080/15715124.2013.811416OAI: diva2:691252
Available from: 2014-01-27 Created: 2014-01-27 Last updated: 2016-08-17Bibliographically approved

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Nyberg, Lars
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