The Water Framework Directive (WFD) sets standards and targets to protect, improve and promote the sustainable use of water through a system of integrated water management.
Landowners with land adjoining a water course have responsibilities set out in Environment Agency guidance.
Water courses are also protected by inclusion in designated sites.
Certain species are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.
Links for further information:
Factors causing loss or decline of priority habitat
Rivers, streams and running water are best sustained for wildlife by:
Quality of rivers and streams
Over past years, the quality of both the rivers Don and Dearne have improved due to legislation and work by the Environment Agency.
Currently assessment by the Environment Agency reports the ecological quality of the majority of streams and rivers in Barnsley as moderate.
One water course (Carlton Dike) has been identified as having previously bad ecological quality and work has been taking place to bring it to moderate quality. River Dove is assessed as poor.
The significant issues include the impact of water company discharges, run off from brown field land and agricultural land and physical modifications. Environment Agency information