The Water Framework Directive (WFD) came into force in December 2000. This introduced a new system of monitoring and assessing the aquatic environment. Member states are now required to report on the ecological status (or potential) for each “water body” (defined as a significant and discrete unit of water).
A number of coastal saline lagoons have been identified as WFD water bodies in the UK. This means that there is a requirement to develop type-based classification tools to help assess their ecological status.
Developing suitable generic tools to classify coastal saline lagoons poses a considerable challenge, as they are unlike other “types” of transitional and coastal waters.
This study was commissioned by Natural England to inform future work of the UK Technical Advisory Group and Marine Task Team in developing a national consistent approach to the assessment of lagoons under the WFD.