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Monitoring of small forested catchments GEOMON – research tool for strategic policy decisions in the environment

Department 58 – International Relations
Department 58 – International Relations


RegionNational coverage
Title of the ProgrammeBiodiversity and Ecosystem Services & Environmental Monitoring and Integrated Planning Control & Adaptation to Climate Change
Title of the ProjectMonitoring of small forested catchments GEOMON – research tool for strategic policy decisions in the environment
Number of the Project---
Project Promoter

Czech Geological Survey

Name of Norwegian Partner(s)

Norwegian Institute for Water Research

Objective of the Project

An important aspect in assessing the impacts of human activities on ecosystems is access to objectively measured data on the state of ecosystems. It is essential that such data have been collected long time (dozens of years), as they must be able to capture time trends, and if possible, they should be obtained in a consistent manner throughout the observation period. The nature of the data should consider the possibility of their use in research of various anthropogenic impacts on ecosystem function (changing the quality of precipitation, temperature, hydrological regime, land use). Monitoring and balance of substance flows in small watersheds is the ideal tool for description of changes associated with the effects of reductions in emissions of acidifying and eutrophying pollutants (sulphur and nitrogen), surface water quality (chemical composition of water as a basic prerequisite for the maintenance of biodiversity) and the composition of the soil (the main reservoir of nutrients for sustainable production and a major player in carbon stocks). In order to competently assess temporal changes in the composition of the three basic components (precipitation, soil, drainage) affecting the functioning of ecosystems (biodiversity, sustainable productivity) in 1994 there was founded a network of small forest watersheds (GEOMON - Geochemical Monitoring), which has been operating without interruption until today. Currently it provides 20 years of continuous monitoring of mass balances in ecologically important elements in the monthly / weekly time resolution. The data are used for detailed and skilled calibration biogeochemical and hydrological models simulating the impacts of climate change, the chemical composition of precipitation and landscape management on the development of the chemical composition of soil and water. Localization of small watersheds GEOMON is situated in the mountain and foothill areas in the Czech Republic, while most fall into large protected landscape areas (PLA, NP), or to Sites of Community Importance (NATURA 2000). The project proposed in the Norwegian Mechanism aims: 1) to make long-term monitoring data available for the needs of professional organizations and government; 2) to complete the database of watersheds to cover objectively measured data on stocks of environmentally significant elements in soils and biomass; 3) by evaluating the relationship between water quality and biodiversity of phytobenthos (algae) to estimate future ecological condition of headwater areas on the basis of the development of the chemistry of surface waters. The project builds on a long-term cooperation between the Czech Geological Survey and The Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) in the acidification and eutrophication of surface waters. The aim of the collaboration is to extend the research to cover the relationship between abiotic environmental factors (chemical composition of surface water - water quality) and diversity of the bioindicating groups when defining the ecological status of running waters, as defined in the European directive on water (Water Framework Directive). The project will also ensure the fulfilment of our obligations in monitoring the state of the natural environment resulting from our membership in international conventions on the protection of the environment (LRTAP- the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution) and helps define criteria for the protection of watercourses and forest soils, applicable to the preparation of national legislation in the context of the adaptation to European Directives (Water Framework Directive, Soil Framework Directive).

Approved grant

Approximately 336 735 EUR

Project DurationStart date: 1st January 2015, End date: 30th April 2016