The monitoring programme River Outlets is part of the Freshwater programme of the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management (Havs- och vattenmyndigheten), within the national environmental monitoring, and include the outlets of our major rivers to the Sea. The aim is to produce fundamental data describing the condition of the most significant river outlets, and to evaluate the transport of various substances to the sea through our main watercourses.
The purpose of examining our outlets is to investigate changes over time in the bulk runoff from Sweden, and to evaluate hazard images and provide a foundation for actions to reduce impact on the sea. Long time series are of particular value for tracking effects of climate change, and predicting future changes. The results will also serve as a basis for evaluating different environmental quality objectives.
Only the chemical composition of the water is considered when examining the outlets. It is complemented by the Trend watercourses, which are respective investigations of both water chemistry and biological parameters in minor watercourses.
Temporal and spatial scope
The monitoring programme comprises monthly sampling and chemical analysis of 47 major watercourses draining into the Sea (one station per watercourse). The watercourses have catchment areas of varying sizes, ranging from approximately 100 to 48 000 km2. Many of the watercourses have complete time series since the 1960's.
The Swedish river outlets (blue dots) and their monitored catchment areas (orange), including parts of some catchmens that are situated outside Sweden (dark orange).