Our freshwaters and seas are generally in good condition, and there have been significant reductions in pollution over the last 25 years.
There are still problems resulting in the loss of habitat and wildlife (both current and historic) and from water pollution, predominantly from excessive amounts of nutrients entering the water. Floods and droughts can damage our economy and wildlife and affect our health and wellbeing.
Use the bathing water application below to find out if your beach as clean as you would expect?
Click on the water environment hub application below to see the status of the rivers, lochs, estuaries and coasts in Scotland. Find out about water levels, invasive species or overall condition.
Water environment hub application
Easy-to-understand graph to show the length of Scotland’s rivers at each category of pollution. What do you notice about the trend over the past 20 years?
How has Scotland’s salmon industry changed over the past 2 decades? What are the reasons for these changes?
How has Scotland’s trout industry changed over the past 2 decades? What are the reasons for these changes?
Production numbers for shellfish and mussels have changed since 2003. Are these changes caused by environmental or economic changes?
This SEPA flood map shows areas which are likely to flood from rivers, the sea and surface water.
Scotland's environment map showing Scotland's rivers, coasts and lochs and their water quality. What factors are having an effect on the quality of waterways near you?
Scotland's environment map showing major river catchment areas. Are your schools grounds within the catchment of a major river?
Scotland’s seas cover an area larger than its land area. This map shows the boundaries.
Diagram showing Atlantic water circulation and coastal water circulation around Scotland.
Bloomin' Algae Citizen scientists across the UK are being urged to help the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (CEH) monitor harmful algal blooms which can threaten public health as well as the lives of dogs, cattle, birds and fish.
Sealife Tracker The Sealife Tracker project aims to collect much needed data on both invasive and climate change indicator marine species around the UK coastline.
Big Pond Dip
Big Pond Dip This simple survey will allow you to do a mini health check on your pond, find out what is currently thriving under the surface and learn a bit more about what species you find.
Big Spawn Count
Big Spawn Count Citizen science project surveying the spawning patterns of amphibians in garden and school ponds.
The Great Nurdle Hunt
The Great Nurdle Hunt Look for nurdles on your local beach you can have fun and help show the local plastics industry their impact on the River Forth.
We have produced videos to help you with data sampling, collection and recording - produced in partnership with Education Scotland and OPAL (Open Air Laboratories).
Watch the video on either YouTube. You can also read the video transcript (word)
Watch the video on YouTube. You can also read the video transcript (word)
This page was reviewed on 28 Nov 2019
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Water - Broad general education (Early to fourth level)