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Institute of

LV Rural Studies


The Elbe catchment under global change

Lead Institute LV Institute of Rural Studies

© aid infodienst, Bonn

Integrated analyses of impacts of global change on the environment and society in the Elbe catchment (GLOWA-Elbe) – Analyses of impacts of agricultural and environmental measures regarding the implementation of the EU water framework directive.

Agriculture is the main land using sector in the Elbe catchment. Agriculture impacts water quality and water supply. We examine the impacts of different scenarios of future land use developments and nutrient surpluses and we analyse possible options of action.

Background and Objective

The framework conditions for the agricultural sector have changed substantially in the past years: globalisation proceeds in particular due to the further development of the EU Common Agricultural Policy and the energy policy as well as the actual developments on the agricultural markets. Our objective is to prepare integrated strategies how problems of water availability and water conflicts of water use including the problems for the environment and the economy can be managed sustainably – in particular in the Elbe catchment.

Target Group

The results support the responsible authorities regarding the implementation of the EU water framework directive.


In a first step we analyse the past development of agricultural land use and nutrient surpluses. In a second step we specify different scenarios of future development across sectors. We assess the impacts of these developments in a framework of an interdisciplinary model network using the Regionalised Agricultural and Environmental Informationsystem RAUMIS on agricultural land use, production, income and diffuse pollution. In a third step we provide the model RAUMIS-Elbe within the GLOWA-Elbe Toolbox which is a network of interdisciplinary models for integrated analyses tailored for potential users.

Data and Methods

The RAUMIS model {LINK: RAUMIS im Modellverbund} is applied for the analyses and specific modules are further developed. This concerns in particular the nutrient balancing as well as the activity „energy maize for biogas“. Furthermore, various interfaces to numerous other models of the integrated GLOWA-Elbe model network are developed. An adjusted Elbe-version of the RAUMIS model is integrated in the GLOWA-Elbe-Expert-Toolbox.


Results of the project are discussed on workshops with experts and stake holders in the Elbe catchment. Furthermore, results are presented on numerous meetings and conferences and are published in different national and international peer-reviewed journals.

Links and Downloads

Involved external Thünen-Partners

Funding Body

  • Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
    (national, öffentlich)


2.1999 - 12.2010

More Information

Project status: finished

Publications to the project

  1. 0

    Gömann H, Kreins P, Heidecke C (2011) How global conditions impact regional agricultural production and nitrogen surpluses in the German Elbe River Basin. Reg Environ Change 11(3):663-678, DOI:10.1007/s10113-010-0198-1

  2. 1

    Gömann H, Kreins P, Julius C (2009) Possible effects of global change in the Elbe basin : policy and citizens' scenario ; perspectives for agriculture in the German Elbe basin - results from an interdisciplinary model network. In: Wechsung F, Kaden S, Behrendt H, Klöcking B (eds) Integrated analysis of the impacts of global change on environment and society in the Elbe basin. Berlin: Weißensee-Verl, pp 115-123

  3. 2

    Gömann H, Kreins P, Julius C, Wechsung F (2003) Landwirtschaft unter dem Einfluss des globalen Wandels sowie sich ändernde gesellschaftliche Anforderungen : interdisziplinäre Untersuchung künftiger Landnutzungsänderungen und resultierender Umwelt- und sozioökonomischer Aspekte. Schr Gesellsch Wirtsch Sozialwiss Landbaues 39:201-208

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