Deliverable 5.7

Abstract: Report on suitable surrogates for use in catchment-scale modelling

The aim of this deliverable is to explore the options for the application of Bayesian Models in the REFRESH study catchments. Most importantly, we search for biotic target variables which are suitable for characterising each catchment, and for environmental variables which can potentially influence the biota and which could be the subject of physical modelling. These combinations of environmental and biotic variables will later be linked by the definition of “knowledge rules”.

After a short introduction to Bayesian Models, we summarize here the response of partners responsible for the REFRESH model catchments on how best to link environmental and biotic variables. Based on this, we suggest target variables (i.e. biotic metrics) for the majority of catchments.

For some catchments the model concepts are already advanced. For Lake Pyhäjärvi (Finland), relationships between nutrients and phytoplankton composition are modelled in a mechanistic way. For Lake Vansjø-Hobøl (Norway), Bayesian Networks have already been constructed. For the wetlands of the Louros catchment (Greece) a detailed concept has been developed.

For the other catchments we define “candidates” for biological variables to be modelled to be used as target variables in Bayesian Networks. These include the River Dee (Scotland), Rivers Thames and Kennet (England), Vlatava river catchment (Czech Republic) and La Tordera (Spain). Preference was given to metrics compliant to the Water Framework Directive or to “intercalibration common metrics” meeting the taxonomic resolution usually applied in the country for the organism group in question.

This report is an internal document as part of the model development strategy in REFRESH. It will subsequently be revised to include the link between the REFRESH model and INCA, and to highlight how the REFRESH Model will be used in the overall modelling strategy. It will describe in more detail how Bayesian Belief networks fit into the overall modelling strategy. Deliverables 5.1 and 5.2 due in month 24 will detail the new modelling approaches to incorporate the ecological response.

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