Human activities impacts sediment cascades from hillslopes down to the largest fluvial systems. Dam reservoir life duration and protection of mountain dwellers depend on adapted management of sediment transport and production. Nonetheless, several issues remain concerning coupling between sediment transport and watercourse management.
Soil conservation measures and torrent control works seek to curtail sediment production and transport at – or close to – the sources. These structures are numerous and sometimes very old. The profound objectives these measures are diverse and vary depending on the geomorphic context and local state of the sediment cascade where the implementation takes place. The lack of sufficient understanding of soil erosion processes, sediment (dis)connectivity activation and torrential hazards propagation continues to make soil erosion prevention and torrent control complex topics with insufficient amount of implementation criteria and long term effect understanding. Consequently, some projects experience disappointing results due to many different circumstances that deserve better understanding.
At the same time, fluvial systems receive changing mountain catchment sediment supply and must deal with obstacle to the sediment cascade as reservoir dams. With the rapid expansion of hydroelectric development globally, there is increasing need to understand the cumulative effects of multiple dams on the sediment budget of a river basin as well as biotic connectivity and other effects. In many case, impacts can be minimized by implementing sustainable sediment management methods in planning, design, and operation of dams, such that sediments are passed around or through dams, maintaining continuity of sediment transport. Strategic planning of dams at the basin scale offers the potential to optimize power generation whilst minimizing environmental impacts for the economic benefit produced.
This EGU session aims at gathering the whole community interested in human actions on sediment fluxes and soil erosion control. Any contribution to the understanding of soil erosion control and sediment transport management based on detailed field feedback, high quality laboratory works, validated numerical modelling and effectiveness assessments are welcome. Using the knowledge gaps identified above as a starting point, the proposed EGU session pretends to join and share scientific and technical opinions all around the world, related to the legacy effects of soil erosion control, check-dams, open check dams and reservoir dams, highlighting the role of complex interactions between ecological elements, geomorphic processes and engineering activities.