A set of indicators transparently assesses the health of freshwater systems in their ecological and social dimensions, quantifying and mapping the multiple benefits that freshwater naturally provides.
The Freshwater Health Index focuses on three main components:
Ecosystem Vitality: The integrity and functioning of the ecosystem itself.
Ecosystem Services: The benefits to people provided by a freshwater ecosystem.
Governance & Stakeholders: The structures and processes by which people make decisions related to water resources.
Each of these components is assessed with a suite of measurable indicators that are aggregated into an index. Evaluation of the indicators requires hydrologic and water allocation models, ecosystem service models, valuation techniques and stakeholder surveys.