HS3.6

Dam operations: abiotic and biotic effects, release management and mitigation/restoration options
Convener: Annunziato Siviglia  | Co-Conveners: Keith Clarke , Christopher Robinson , Knut Alfredsen 
Oral Programme
 / Mon, 03 May, 15:30–17:15  / Room 38
Poster Programme
 / Attendance Mon, 03 May, 17:30–19:00  / Hall A
River systems worldwide are currently impounded to provide societal services such as hydropower, flood control, and recreation. In particular, dam operations affect the downstream flow, thermal and sediment transport regimes, which in turn cause alterations in river morphology, temperature patterns and surface-ground water exchanges.
This results in cascading effects on the ecological integrity of the stream, and of the adjacent aquatic and terrestrial habitats and ecotones (i.e. backwaters and wetlands, riparian vegetation, etc.).

The assessment of the impacts related to dam operations is becoming an increasingly important topic for management including the restoration of impounded river systems. Such assessment is also a requirement of the international legislation aiming to preserve the aquatic ecosystems and
to increase the ecological and social benefits they provide. Moreover, the definition of release management scenarios and
mitigation/restoration options in regulated rivers, requires a
comprehensive and detailed knowledge of the existing links between the physical variables and the biota, which can only be obtained with an interdisciplinary research approach.

Since it is still difficult to describe, quantify and evaluate the interactions and dynamics of biotic-abiotic process in regulated rivers, due to their complexity, this session aims to improve the understanding of consequences of dam operations, with a strong focus on the links between hydrological, hydraulic, biochemical, solid transport and
ecological processes.

For this session we solicit papers dealing with theoretical and experimental studies with a particular focus on the following subjects:

1. Hydropeaking;
2. Environmental flows;
3. Experimental releases;
4. Flushing floods (water and sediment releases).

Moreover, investigations of using controlled flow releases in
restoration actions and ecosystem benefits evaluation are welcome, especially involving scientists from other fields as environmental economy and social sciences.

An invited talk by Professor Geoffrey Petts (Department of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences - Birmingham University) will open the session.
The best outcomes of this session will be selected for possible publication in a special issue of River Research and Applications.
Related event: PSD14 – HS3.6
Mon, 03 May, 14:00–14:45  / Room 37