A pan-European river and catchment database
Jager, Alfred de
PublisherLuxembourg : Publications Office of the European Union
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Digital data on river networks, lakes and drainage basins (catchments) are an important pre-requisite for modelling hydrological processes, including the analysis of pressures and their impact on water resources. Datasets covering extensive areas such as the European continent are especially important for mapping and monitoring activities of European institutions. The European Water Framework Directive, for example, explicitly asks for the setup of Geographical Information Systems including detailed layers of water bodies (rivers, lakes, wetlands) and their drainage basins, while the European Environment Agency (EEA) requires adequate river and catchment data for monitoring the status and trends of water resources over the entire pan-European continent. The Catchment Characterisation and Modelling (CCM) activity of the European Commissions' Joint Research Centre has developed advanced methodologies to derive adequate layers from digital elevation data and ancillary information. Drainage density has been modelled through a landscape typology and lakes have been considered during river mapping. Finally, the database was enriched with a set of attributes describing important characteristics of catchments and river segments. The resulting database covers the entire pan-European continent from the Atlantic to the Urals and from the Mediterranean to northern Scandinavia, including the Atlantic islands and Turkey. The use of homogeneous input data and their analysis with the same methodology ensures data with comparable and well documented characteristics (e.g., level of detail, geometric quality, attributes) over the entire area. This report details the background for developing this database, describes the methodology implemented, and discusses the strengths and limitations of the approach. It is intended to inform decision makers, scientists and technicians involved in water-related issues about the main characteristics of this product as well as on its potential for different applications.
Citation“Vogt, Jürgen; Soille, Pierre; Jager, Alfred de. 2007. A pan-European river and catchment database. Luxembourg : Publications Office of the European Union.”
Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged ; European Communities.Bibl. : p. 87-90.European Union document