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Policy Briefs and policy discussion papers
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    In the course of preparing the REFORM Stakeholder Workshop, the workshop steering group together with the Project Board of REFORM produced a 1st policy discussion paper (http://www.reformrivers.eu/events/stakeholder-workshop/documents), which purpose was to stimulate dialogue at the stakeholder workshop (Brussels, 26–27 February 2013).

    In the course of preparing the REFORM Stakeholder Workshop, the workshop steering group together with the Project Board of REFORM produced a 1st policy discussion paper (http://www.reformrivers.eu/events/stakeholder-workshop/documents), which purpose was to stimulate dialogue at the stakeholder workshop (Brussels, 26–27 February 2013). The 1st policy discussion paper provided a progress update on the REFORM results with brief problem descriptions and conclusions from the main work-packages and proposed topics for discussion being in mind the items of interest of stakeholders and policy-makers involved in WFD implementation and river basin management planning.

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    • Final

    Policy Brief: 


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    This is the first in a series of three policy briefs that will be published within the duration of the REFORM project. This brief contains information on the:
    - policy focus of the project
    - key policy milestones requiring technical & scientific support
    - key REFORM outputs in support of policy milestones (Nov ’11 – Feb ’13)
    - main conclusions and recommendations so far
    - links to additional technical / scientific information
    - links selected related projects / activities

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    • Final

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    This is the second in a series of three policy briefs that will be published within the duration of the REFORM project. This brief contains information on the:

    • key REFORM outputs in support of policy (June 2013 - June 2014)
    • key achievements (June 2013 – June 2014)
    • main conclusions and recommendations on:
      - central HYMO processes to be addressed
      - biota responses to HYMO degradation and restoration
      - new insights on biota-based metrics of HYMO impacts
      - costs and benefits of restoration measures
      - following a systematic approach in restoration project planning

    In addition, the brief includes information and a web link to the upcoming REFORM International Conference.

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    • Final

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    This policy paper aims are to identify specific issues and raise awareness of the issues related to groundwater-river interactions by improving knowledge transfers to policy makers and water managers. Groundwater is a key factor in supporting ecological flows (Eflows), both concerning quantity and quality of surface water required for Good Status of aquatic ecosystems. 

    This policy paper is the result of discussions that took place at a 3-day expert workshop (Biebrza Valley, Poland, 15–17 September 2014) organized by the REFORM project on the relevance of groundwater-surface water interactions in European actions oriented at sustainable water management.

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    • Final

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    Fluvial communities and their ecological integrity are the result of their evolutionary adaptation to river habitats. Flowing water is the main driver for development and maintenance of these habitats, which is why environmental flows (e-Flows) are needed where societal demands are depleting water resources. Fluvial habitats are not only the result of water flow, however, but are shaped by the combined interaction of water, sediments woody/organic material, and riparian vegetation. Water abstraction, flow regulation by dams, gravel pits or siltation by fine sediments eroded from hillslopes are pressures that can disturb interactions among water, sediments, and other constituents that create the habitats needed by fluvial communities. 

    Present e-Flow design criteria are based only on water flow requirements. Here we argue that sediment dynamics need to be considered when specifying instream flows, thereby expanding the environmental objectives and definition of e-Flows to include sediments (extended e-Flows).

    We recognize that currently used biological assessment systems and metrics are not sufficiently sensitive indicators of ecological status of water bodies impacted by sediment and flow management. To overcome current limitations of available metrics that use biological quality elements (BQEs) in assessing flow related impacts, we are proposing alternative assessment criteria that include hydromorphological (HYMO) aspects. Our broadened definition of extended e-flows requires a broader set of protocols and tools derived from specific HYMO approaches (e.g. REFORM multiscale hymo framework). 

    To this aim, a framework for e-Flows assessment and identification of best strategies for fluvial restoration, including the context of rivers regulated by large dams, is presented.

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    • Final

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    This is the third and final in a series of three Policy Briefs published by the REFORM project. This Policy Brief presents key conclusions and recommendations of the REFORM project, which are relevant for policy-makers involved in river basin management planning.

    The key conclusions and recommendations address the following themes:
    - REFORM hydromorphology framework
    - REFORM hydromorphological assessment methods
    - Remote sensing for river hydromorphological investigation
    - Role of vegetation and floodplains
    - Groundwater-river interactions
    - Coupling hydromorphology to biotic responses
    - Planning stream and river restoration
    - Cost-benefit analysis of restoration measures
    - Linking e-flows to sediment dynamics
    - Restoration measures at project level and their effects

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    • Final

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