Title: Nitrate pollution risk assessment: from the model to the indicator

Authors: Anne Lacroix, Francois Laurent, Denis Ruelland, Emmanuelle Sauboua

Addresses: GAEL, Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory, UMR National Institute for Agricultural Research, Pierre Mendes France University, Box 47, 38040 Grenoble Cedex 09, France. ' UMR ESO CNRS, Universite du Maine, Avenue Olivier Messiaen, 72 085 Le Mans Cedex 09, France. ' CNRS, UMR HydroSciences, Maison des Sciences de l'Eau, Universite Montpellier II, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 5, France. ' Unite INRA PSDR, BP 47 38040 Grenoble Cedex 09, France

Abstract: The diffuse nature of nitrate pollution makes it difficult to evaluate existing or planned measures to reduce it. Tools have therefore been developed to assess this pollution, ranging from simple indicators to complex models. The aim of this paper is to compare indicators and models by analysing results obtained from their individual application to the same area. The pros and cons of each approach are evaluated in terms of both the conditions of their implementation and the results obtained. This comparison helps to guide the choice of a methodology. Rules governing that choice are set in relation to the nature of the diagnosis to perform and the characteristics of the area under study.

Keywords: nitrate pollution; indicators; simulation modelling; decision-making tool; risk assessment; water pollution; environmental sustainability; nonpoint source pollution;.

DOI: 10.1504/IJARGE.2006.009164

International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, 2006 Vol.5 No.2/3, pp.206 - 223

Published online: 07 Mar 2006 *

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