Impact of Land Use on Stream Water Quality in the German Low Mountain Range Basin Gersprenz


  • Britta Schmalz Technische Universität Darmstadt, Chair of Engineering Hydrology and Water Management (ihwb), Germany
  • Marion Kruse Technische Universität Darmstadt, Chair of Engineering Hydrology and Water Management (ihwb), Germany



land cover, land use, hydrological monitoring, water quality, electrical conductivity


Knowledge of the interactions of hydrological processes with the landscape are important to understand variations in basic hydrological data for the comprehensive management of basins. Land cover and land use is one essential factor in the assessment of such management problems. In this study in a representative German basin, available land cover and land use data is analysed in correspondence with available hydrological measuring data.
The aim of this study is to analyse the relationships between hydrological data and land use and to obtain a monitoring strategy which allows a valuable support to a comprehensive management of river basins.
Two spatial scales, the basin Gersprenz and its subbasin Fischbach, are described in detail regarding the variations in electrical conductivity (EC) as a parameter of water quality with high resolution field data from the state-wide monitoring network (12 stations) as well as from own research monitoring (12 stations). The results show that water quality, using EC as an indicator, can be related to land use pattern. From stream source to mouth, there is an increase in anthropogenic impacts and the EC values show an increasing tendency in downstream direction. This anthropogenic impact is due to agricultural use, settlements, commerce and industry areas, and discharges of waste water. The hydrological monitoring will be continued in the future to give the possibility to assess long-term variations on different spatial and temporal scales.


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How to Cite

Schmalz, B., & Kruse, M. (2019). Impact of Land Use on Stream Water Quality in the German Low Mountain Range Basin Gersprenz. Landscape Online, 72.



Research Article