Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


The report outlines the advantages of biological monitoring of pollution in superficial water courses. Biological analysis shows the results of pollution stress integrated over time, whilst chemical data relate to the situation at the time a sample is collected. Biological monitoring measures the effect of the global situation rather than that of a single parameter and gives a direct evaluation of the consequences of pollution. If the number of pollutants to be examined is high, biological monitoring has a lower cost than chemical analysis. Several methods for biological monitoring are considered. The need is urgent in areas characterised by an increase of human population and a rapid development of industrial and agricultural activities. Chemical monitoring of water courses is made difficult by distance, cost and the relative lack of scientists. Biotic Indices on Single Taxon and on Macroinvertebrates are suitable methods, which are inexpensive and well-tested. An hydrological basin should be identified which has some uncontaminated water courses and others with different levels of pollution. Monitoring should be repeated in successive segments of the water courses, and completed by measuring a few simple parameters.

Additional information

Authors: RAVERA O, JRC Ispra Estab. (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: International Workshop on "Environ. and de.: in search of intern. coop". Roma (IT), March 10-12, 1989
Availability: Available from (1) as Paper EN 34701 ORA
Record Number: 198910572 / Last updated on: 1994-12-01
Original language: en
Available languages: en