Confidence rating of marine eutrophication assessments

image of Confidence rating of marine eutrophication assessments

This report presents the development of a methodology for assessing confidence in eutrophication status classifications. The method can be considered as a secondary assessment, supporting the primary assessment of eutrophication status. The confidence assessment is based on a transparent scoring of the 'value' of the indicators on which the primary assessment is made. Such secondary assessment of confidence represents a first step towards linking status classification with information regarding their accuracy and precision and ultimately a tool for improving or targeting actions to improve the health of the marine environment.




We have shown that confidence rating of marine eutrophication (and other status assessments) can be performed using a practical, indirect and nonstatistical approach. The approach should at this stage be seen as a first step only, paving the way for more sophisticated and formal methodologies. We do not intend to promote the suggested methodology, but do stress the need for confidence rating eutrophication status classifications. However, we consider the methodology reported here to be a useful tool in regard to: (1) indirect assessment of the accuracy and precision of the primary assessment of eutrophication status, (2) future revision of marine monitoring networks as well as (3) implementation of science-based nutrient management strategies, especially those pursuant to the EU Water Framework Directive and the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive.


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