Riverine Inputs and Direct Discharges to Convention Waters

Data available on ODIMS via: https://odims.ospar.org/documents/1620

OSPAR Contracting Parties’ RID 2017 Data Report

This report presents the results of monitoring undertaken by OSPAR Contracting Parties for the Riverine Inputs and Direct Discharges Programme (RID) during 2017. The purpose of the RID Programme is to assess, as accurately as possible, all riverine inputs and direct discharges of selected pollutants to Convention waters on an annual basis, and to contribute to the implementation of the Joint Assessment and Monitoring Programme (JAMP). The OSPAR Convention area is divided into five main regions: the Arctic Waters, the Greater North Sea, the Celtic Seas, the Bay of Biscay, and the Wider Atlantic.

Full Report

Determinands monitored on a mandatory basis include nutrients, heavy metals (mercury, cadmium, copper, zinc, and lead), suspended particulate matter, and salinity (in saline waters). Several more determinands can be monitored on a voluntary basis. Direct discharge sources can include sewage treatment plants, industry, and aquaculture; some Contracting Parties also report urban runoff. Not all Contracting Parties report their direct discharges.

Since the programme started in 1990, many Contracting Parties report reduced riverine loads of nutrients and metals, but there can be large variations from year to year, and there are some unexplained peaks. Direct discharges of nutrients and metals are also declining in many areas, with some exceptions.

The report also gives overviews of the efforts to improve the data quality of this programme. Despite these efforts, the long-term data series still have some gaps and inconsistencies, which is unfortunate for the quality of the RID trend assessments. Further efforts to improve the historical RID data series are therefore strongly recommended.