Given the vast amount of literature on the essential influence of riparian vegetation on observed river adjustments and trajectories, and the relative lack of consideration of riparian vegetation in the most frequently used hydromorphological protocols that consider riparian zones, we have two main objectives :
- to review the hydromorphological context of the WFD to promote its revision and updating
- to promote a multi-scale procedure to characterize and assess the status of riparian corridors.
Thus, we call for including riparian vegetation explicitly as an additional hydromorphological element when classifying the ecological status of rivers, as well as considering knowledge about the influence of riparian vegetation on the functioning of river ecosystems. This involves improving the understanding of riparian vegetation trends in the context of natural and human-induced disturbances to support suitable management practices and conservation policies.