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The research catalogue is an archive of ESRC-funded grants and outputs. Links, files and other content will no longer be maintained or updated after April 2014.

Catchment Hydrology, Resources, Economics and Management (ChREAM): Integrated Modelling of WFD Impacts upon Rural Land Use & Farm Incomes

This project combines natural science and socio-economic research to assess the costs and benefits to the rural community of changing farming practices to produce a healthy and sustainable river environment of good amenity value. A key focus of the project is to examine how (within a context of reforms to the Common Agricultural Policy and complicating issues such as climate variability and non-agricultural sources of pollution) the implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive is likely to affect agricultural activities (eg due to possible restrictions on fertiliser use or faecal matter outputs from livestock) and so impact upon incomes within already fragile farming communities.

The research will also assess the potential water amenity and recreational benefits arising from such policies and compare this to their likely cost. Central to the methodology will be an interdisciplinary framework that combines water quality modelling with farm surveys and economic analyses to provide an integrated study of this multifaceted issue. The project will build upon the findings from a number of previous studies and focus on a case study of the Humber catchment (which covers a fifth of the area of England from the midlands to north Yorkshire and across to the east coast).