Water quality monitoring in Europe, especially in transboundary water courses has made steady progress during the last decades through establishment of international commissions. The main activities of these commissions include protection and management of the catchment, sustainable use of the river and establishment of Accident Emergency Warning Systems (AEWS). The latter could be effectively accomplished only through real-time monitoring. Concurrently real-time data have been found important for the monitoring of potable water intake points, wastewater treatment plants, estuaries and in aquaculture. With the recognition of the diversified demand, there are a number of questions to be answered such as: (1) are we satisfied with the existing monitoring systems? (2) is standardisation of the measuring instruments a necessity? (3) do we have foolproof systems for data capture and transmission? (4) are there adequate procedures to analyse vast amount of data generated? We have to answer these questions urgently as the demand for real-time monitoring has been drastically increased.

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