Edited by David Pearce
Chapter 19: Scale Issues and Scaling Procedures in Integrated Water Accounting
Roy Brouwer, Sjoerd Schenau and Rob van der Veeren INTRODUCTION The implementation of the European Water Framework Directive (WFD) has increased policy and decision-maker demand for integrated hydroeconomic information at the level of river basins. In order to meet this increasing demand, a new integrated hydro-economic accounting system has been developed in the Netherlands, the National Accounting Matrix including Water Accounts for River Basins (NAMWARiB). NAMWARiB provides information about the interactions between the physical water system and the economy at national and river basin scale. This involves not only linking water-related environmental data to economic data, but also presenting these data at the relevant spatial scale through appropriate up- and downscaling procedures. It is this issue of matching available data across various spatial scales that has proven to be one of the major challenges in the compilation of the new integrated river basin information system. According to the European Task Force on Water Satellite Accounts (2002, p. 4), the implications of the WFD include more focus on the geographical boundaries of the data, that is, water bodies and river basin districts. Also the new Handbook on Integrated Environmental and Economic Water Accounting, drafted by the UN acknowledges this: ‘it is important that the spatial reference is the same for hydrological and economic data’. However, ‘river basins for which hydrological data is usually available, do not generally coincide with administrative regions for which economic information is collected’ (United Nations Statistics Division, 2006, p. 17). In fact, no consistent water economic information...
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