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Water 2018, 10(7), 855; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10070855

Comparative Assessment of the Hydromorphological Status of the Rivers Odra, Bystrzyca, and Ślęza Using the RHS, LAWA, QBR, and HEM Methods above and below the Hydropower Plants

Institute of Environmental Engineering, Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences, pl. Grunwaldzki 24, 50-363 Wrocław, Poland
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Received: 29 May 2018 / Revised: 20 June 2018 / Accepted: 24 June 2018 / Published: 27 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Freshwater Quality as a Driver of Aquatic Ecosystem Health)
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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to assess the hydromorphological status of watercourses above and below the hydropower plants. To this end, four methods were selected which represent various groups of methods used in various member states of the EU. Particular focus was on the RHS method (assessment of the physical habitats—the method used in Poland). The following methods were also used: LAWA (assessment of physical habitats, Germany), QBR (assessment of bank habitats, Spain), and HEM (comprehensive morphological assessment, the Czech Republic). For each of these methods, appropriate hydromorphological status indicators were calculated (assessment on a five grade scale). The analysis revealed that despite the different assumptions, the methods lead to similar results and can be used in various countries, especially in Europe. Because of the broad spectrum of space and time data used in the analysis, the results of HEM are the most reliable; however, this method is also the most difficult to use. All the methods meet the requirements of the Water Framework Directive, which calls for rational water management. Based on the hydromorphological assessment, the results obtained helped us to evaluate the environmental changes on the river sections above and below the hydropower plants. View Full-Text
Keywords: hydropower plants; hydromorphology; ecological state; water quality; rivers hydropower plants; hydromorphology; ecological state; water quality; rivers
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Wiatkowski, M.; Tomczyk, P. Comparative Assessment of the Hydromorphological Status of the Rivers Odra, Bystrzyca, and Ślęza Using the RHS, LAWA, QBR, and HEM Methods above and below the Hydropower Plants. Water 2018, 10, 855.

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