In order to prevent and reduce water pollution, promote a sustainable use, protect the environment and enhance the status of aquatic ecosystems, this article deals with the application of advanced mathematical techniques designed to aid in the management of records of different water quality monitoring networks. These studies include the development of a software tool for decision support, based on the application of fuzzy logic techniques, which can indicate water quality episodes from the behavior of variables measured at continuous automatic water control networks. Using a few physical-chemical variables recorded continuously, the expert system is able to obtain water quality phenomena indicators, which can be associated, with a high probability of cause-effect relationship, with human pressure on the water environment, such as urban discharges or diffuse agricultural pollution. In this sense, at the proposed expert system, automatic water quality control networks complement manual sampling of official administrative networks and laboratory analysis, providing information related to specific events (discharges) or continuous processes (eutrophication, fish risk) which can hardly be detected by discrete sampling. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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