International Society for River Science: 3rd Biennial Symposiume
May 15, 2013
June 15, 2013
June 20, 2013
August 5-9, 2013
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International Society for River Science: 3rd Biennial Symposium
August 5-Friday, August 9, 2013
The 3rd Biennial Symposium of the International Society for River Science will be hosted by Beijing Normal University, Beijing, China.
Full Paper Submission address: http://www.2013isrs.org/ss/
Faced with the degradation of riverine ecosystems across the globe, this conference focuses on the achievement of healthy and viable rivers with an objective of consolidating knowledge on riverine ecosystem response to the impacts of natural and human pressures, and promoting multi-disciplinary solutions for protecting or restoring the ecosystems. All the researchers, managers, and students in related fields, such as hydrology, water quality and aquatic ecology, are invited to share in the search for more effective and science-based solutions to maintain our important riverine ecosystems.
The conference will be held in Jingshi Hotel and Conference Centre at Beijing Normal University, Beijing, China.
Session 1: Impacts of natural and human pressures and assessment of river ecosystem health
Session 2: Modeling changes within river ecosystems
Session 3: Environmental flow assessment and delivery
Session 4: Water quality management
Session 5: Hyporheic exchange in river
Session 6: Aquatic community protection and restoration
Session 7: Hydraulic project management
Session 8: Regional and Basin management
Special session 1: Resilience of Floodplain Ecosystems
Hosted by Prof. Martin Thoms and Dr Michael Reid, Riverine Landscapes Research Lab, University of New England, Australia
are considered to be amongst the most productive and diverse ecosystems on
earth. They are thought to be generally resilient, having the capacity
to recover from pressures such as droughts, climate change, catchment
alteration and flow modification. From time to time the pressure is too
great and floodplain ecosystems will collapse to be replaced by another
(sometimes less desirable) system. We have often been unaware that a
system is approaching a threshold until it has been reached. Planning
in water dependent ecosystems is therefore about maintaining or
re-establishing the resilience of these systems to cope with a fluctuating
climate and other stresses, including water extraction. This includes
identification of thresholds that may lead to catastrophic changes in
floodplain ecosystems. Understanding and planning to build resilience
of systems requires a different approach than those used under current
planning and management arrangements.
Speical Session 2: Environmental Accounting and Water Resources & Environment Management.
Hosted by Dr. Daniel E. Campbell, United States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory
Water is an important material foundation of the national economy and social development and the driving force of socio-economic system operation, so the study and evaluation of water resources must be based on the coupling system of society, economy and ecology, otherwise it is bound to affect the objectivity and accuracy of evaluation. On the basis of Odum’s well-known concept of emergy as a unified measure for evaluating flows (income and expenses) and storages (assets and implicitly liabilities, this session will try to develop, test and eventually standardize giving rise to a new field of accounting that will facilitate sound decision-making for water resource and environment management, including businesses, governments ,and nongovernmental organizations.
Other proposed sessions and workshops are welcome.
Papers and abstracts
Geoff is Vice Chancellor of the University of Westminster, President of the International Society for River Science, and founding Editor-in-Chief of the international journal River Research and Applications.
Geoff studied at Liverpool, Exeter and Southampton universities before being appointed to a Lectureship at Loughborough University in 1979, where he was awarded a Chair in 1989. In 1994 he moved to Birmingham University as Professor of Physical Geography and Director of Environmental Research and Management. Two years later, he founded the Centre for Environmental Research and Training and became Head of the School of Geography and Environmental Sciences in 1998. He was promoted to Pro Vice-Chancellor at Birmingham University in 2001before moving to the University of Westminster in 2007.
His research is at the interface of hydrology, geomorphology and ecology on rivers in Arctic to Mediterranean environments, and he has particular interests in regulated rivers – rivers impounded by dams.
Geoff has held a number of external appointments, including a term as Director of the International Water Resources Association, as Council Member of the Freshwater Biological Association and as a member of the International Council for Science (ICSU) Scientific Committee on Water Research. He has served on programme management committees for UNESCO and the US Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service.
In 2007 he was awarded the Busk Medal of the Royal Geographical Society, and in 2009 the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award of the International Society for River Science.
Reflections on Impounded Rivers - 30 years on.
Geoffrey E. Petts
University of Westminster
In 1984 I published a monograph on ‘Impounded Rivers: perspectives for ecological management’. In the conclusion, I called for consideration of the long-term ecological consequences of river regulation and a forward-looking, ‘anticipatory’ approach to river management based upon a recognition that the full range of natural flows has a role in sustaining riverine ecosystems. This paper looks back over the past 3 decades of river regulation, evaluates progress in both scientific understanding and outcomes in practice, and looks forward to 2040 highlighting both research gaps and imperatives for action.
Professor Bunn is the Director of the Australian Rivers Institute at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia. His major research interests are in the ecology of river and wetland systems with a particular focus on the science to underpin river management. This research has resulted in over 200 technical publications, most of which are refereed journal papers and conference proceedings. Stuart has extensive experience working with international and Australian government agencies on water resource management issues, and from 2008-2012 served as an Australian National Water Commissioner. He is currently Chair of the Executive Scientific Expert Panel for the Southeast Queensland Healthy Waterways Partnership, and a member of the newly-formed Advisory Committee for Social, Economic and Environment Science for the Murray-Darling Basin Authority. He is also a member of the Scientific Steering Committee for the Global Water System Project. In 2007, Professor Bunn was awarded the Australian Society for Limnology Medal in recognition of his outstanding contribution to research and management of Australia’s inland waters.
Challenges for river protection and rehabilitation in human dominated landscapes
Stuart E. Bunn
It is well understood that rivers are highly connected with the landscapes their drain. Small streams are tightly linked to their riparian zones; larger rivers with their floodplains and, in many cases, coastal waters or downstream lakes. We know too that the natural flow regime is a key driver that links together these important riverscape elements. These strong interdependencies also make river systems especially vulnerable to human activities, and a central challenge for scientists and managers is how to mitigate these stressors and protect or where necessary rehabilitate river ecosystems. We know that much can be done to protect river systems through better management of riparian lands, and the methods to do so are well established. Similarly, robust tools have been developed to identify ecological water requirements for rivers and wetlands. However, many of these management interventions may not be plausible or socially acceptable in human dominated landscapes, especially where riparian areas and floodplains have dense human settlements and are intensively used for food production. New approaches are required to optimize management investments in catchment and river protection or rehabilitation, to continue to meet societal needs for water and deliver desired environmental, social and cultural benefits.
Richter has been a leader in river science and conservation for more than 20
years. He is the Director of Global
Freshwater Strategies for The Nature Conservancy's Global Freshwater Program,
which promotes sustainable water management with governments, corporations,
and local communities. Brian has
consulted on more than 120 river projects worldwide, with a focus on the
challenge of meeting human needs for water, food, and energy while sustaining
healthy rivers and lakes. Brian serves
as a water advisor to some of the world’s largest corporations and investment
banks, and has testified before the US Congress on multiple occasions. He also teaches a course on Water
Sustainability at the University of Virginia. Brian has developed numerous
scientific tools and methods to support river protection and restoration
efforts, including the Indicators of Hydrologic Alteration software that is
being used by water managers and ecologists worldwide. Brian was featured in
a BBC documentary with David Attenborough on “How Many People Can Live on
Planet Earth?” He has published many
scientific papers on the importance of ecologically sustainable water
management in international science journals, and co-authored a book with
Seeking Sustainability: Managing Water in a Changing World
The Nature Conservancy
The extraction of water from rivers, lakes and aquifers has doubled over the past 50 years. The consumption of water globally for agricultural irrigation tripled in volume — a trend that played a large role in enabling food production to more than double over the same period. As a result of heavy water use, many rivers and aquifers have become severely depleted, to the point that many rivers are now regularly running dry, aquifer levels are dropping rapidly, local economies are being severely impacted, and freshwater species have become highly imperiled. To address this water scarcity, consumption levels will need to be stabilized and reduced in many water basins, even while the climate is changing. Particular attention will need to be directed at agricultural irrigation, which is responsible for more than 90% of all river and aquifer depletions. Much more aggressive regulation of water use, including capping total allocations in water-scarce basins, clearly defining rights to water use, and better monitoring and enforcement of those allocations, is urgently needed. New water-efficient technologies and irrigation practices hold considerable promise for reducing water consumption, but they will ultimately be of little value if overall water use grows to the point of completely exhausting our water sources.
Martin Doyle is Professor of River Science and Policy, with trianing in hydrology, geomorphology, and engineering. His research is at the interface of science, economics and policy of environmental management and restoration. His background is in hydraulics and sediment transport in rivers, but he also works on river infrastructure, including decommissioning dams and levees, as well as research on financing rehabilitation of aging hydropower dams and the impacts of infrastructure on river ecosystems across the US. He holds a PhD in Earth Science from Purdue University, and a Masters in Environmental Engineering from Ole Miss. His research has resulted in several awards including a Guggenheim Fellowship (2009), a National Science Foundation Early Career Award (2005), nd the Chorafas Prize from the Chorafas Foundation in Switzerland (2002). For his work in bridging environmental science and policy, in 2009 was named the inaugural Frederick J Clarke Scholar by the US Army Corps of Engineers. In 2008 Dr Doyle was named an Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellow by Stanford University, and received a GlaxoSmithKline Faculty Fellowship for Public Policy from the Institute for Emerging Issues. More information on research program: http://sites.nicholas.duke.edu/martindoyle/.
The evolving hydro-politics of managing the world’s rivers: Changing population, climate, and expectations
Managing rivers has been a goal of society for thousands of years. Over the past two centuries, as technology has profoundly changed our ability to alter river systems worldwide, expectations of society for river management hav grown enormously. How rivers are managed is a reflection of missions and mandates assumed by river management agencies, which reflect basic politics of the nation-state home of the river. Quite simply, river system condition is a reflection of hydro-politics.
In the past, river managers have allowed society to continue unrealistic expectations of conflicting mandates: flood control, hydropower, water supply, ecosystem sustainability, recreation. The 21st century will be one in which the mega-trends of global population growth and changing climate become realities, and these new constraints will challenge river managers ability to meet their many, often conflicting mandates.
This talk will provide a historical perspective on global river management, the current state of science and policy in specific countries, and a look toward the future. Specifically, this talk will advocate river managers taking a more proactive approach to hydro-politics in which multi-purposes promises are set aside in favor of clearly articulated, prioritized-purpose realities.
Dr Geoff Syme is Professor of Planning at Edith Cowan University in Western Australia.. He has had 33 years experience as a social researcher and consultant in the area of water resources management and natural resource management in urban and regional planning. He has led major national research projects in the areas of catchment management, and social justice issues associated with water re-allocation. His current interests are in the incorporation of intergenerational equity in the management of modified rivers. He received a CSIRO Medal for excellence in research in the area of water conservation and allocation. He is currently an Editor in Chief of the Journal of Hydrology.
Urban River Futures
Edith Cowan University
Despite increasing global urbanism to cities located on major rivers there has been comparatively little attention to understanding their significance in improving the wellbeing of the communities which surround them. Many larger cities were founded on rivers to take advantage of the access to reliable water supply for potable water, economic and industrial development and transport and increasingly water based recreation. As a consequence many have become polluted as populations have risen. At the same time historically and currently these rivers provide an identity and sense of place for the populace. Civic pride as well as practical necessity has led to much greater interest in their rehabilitation over the last twenty years.
Publications of urban river research papers associated have burgeoned, but surprisingly only about two percent of this research has had a social science focus. Many of these have recently focused on society and river management being linked by the concept of ecosystem services. Such an approach while having many advantages does not address equity issues and the political context within which urban planning operates. A crucial issue for river scientists will be how to focus their research to assist with developing this linkage. This paper discusses how the ecosystem services approach to river management and the science underpinning it can be pragmatically linked to public planning processes in deriving new futures for river management. In doing so it makes suggestions as to the future role of social investigation in the overall urban river research effort.
Daniel E. Campbell is an ecologist of the USEPA and he has worked at the Atlantic Ecology Division, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, Office of Research and Development in Narragansett from 1995. He has developed ideas for using ecological integrity and ecosystem health as goal functions for judging the state of the environment; he has published several papers on sustainability discussing its theoretical basis as well as performing studies to evaluate the sustainability of regional systems. He has used Energy Systems Theory and environmental accounting using emergy in his work on developing a comprehensive accounting system for the environment, economy, and society. The bottom line of the balance sheets created using this approach is a direct reading of the sustainability of any human enterprise. Recently, he has been involved in research to assess the benefits to society provided by coral reef ecosystems. Campbell is an international expert traveling to China, Italy, and Mexico to talk about his work and to interact with researchers. He has published more than 50 papers in peer-reviewed journals and served as an editor for 5 books. In addition, he has been an author of three USEPA Project Reports, as well as, book chapters, encyclopedia articles, and book reports.
Emergy Accounting: Past, Present and Future
Daniel E. Campbell
United States Environmental Protection Agency, USA
One of the greatest problems facing all of the countries of the world today is how to put a fair value on the contributions that the environment makes to maintain the economic and social well being of their people. This is not an easy task, since fair value can only be determined using an organic method that can evaluate the environmental, economic and social contributions to system well being in an unbiased manner. Some economists have attempted to solve this problem through applying the concept of ecosystem services. A “service” is fundamentally an economic idea and when evaluated in economic terms, value is assigned to environmental work and work products based on direct or indirect estimates of people’s willingness to pay and accept payment for the environmental product or service. Conversely, environmental accounting using emergy attributes all value to the planetary energy sources, the sun, deep heat of the earth and gravitational attraction of the sun and moon, which are the major independent sources of available energy entering the biosphere. The latter approach fulfills our criteria, as an organic method, because the transformation of energy potentials is responsible for all action, and therefore, all environmental, economic, and social products and services have a production function. If that production function is known, the emergy of the product or service can be determined by tracking the independent (i.e., without double counting) available energy inputs required and converting these energy inputs of many types to one kind of energy, e.g., solar joules. The unit of emergy is the solar emjoule (semj), where the prefix “em” connotes the past use of available energy (joules, J) to make the product or service. The direct and indirect inputs in solar emjoules are then summed to determine the emergy required to generate the product or service. Recently, emergy accounting has been applied to evaluate the education system of the United States to obtain an essentially independent measure of the work contributions of people, for which money (the economic measure of value) is paid. As a result, emergy accounting can now be applied to environmental, economic and social evaluations in a uniform manner, i.e., without using the national emergy to money ratio to determine the value of human services. This method does require additional work in that the national education system must be evaluated to establish the emergy of the work delivered to the economy and society of a nation by the occupations in the labor force. Environmental accounting using emergy was implicitly predicated on the accounting model of an income statement and balance sheet, since from the beginning; the analysis was performed by evaluating flows (income and expenses) and storages (assets and implicitly liabilities). At present, the theoretical basis for rigorously applying accounting principles in energy evaluations has been developed and we are working on a case study and practical demonstration of how the various accounts, the income statement and the balance sheet can be constructed. In the future, we expect these methods to be further developed, tested and eventually standardized giving rise to a new field of accounting that will facilitate sound decision-making for any enterprise, including businesses, governments ,and nongovernmental organizations.