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SFS Annual Meeting

Tuesday, May 22, 2018
11:00 - 12:30

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11:00 - 11:15: / 310 A THE FUTURE OF DAM-IMPACTED RIVERS IN THE ANTHROPOCENE

5/22/2018  |   11:00 - 11:15   |  310 A

THE FUTURE OF DAM-IMPACTED RIVERS IN THE ANTHROPOCENE Rivers were the arteries for the development of ancient civilizations and modern societies, so it comes at no surprise that humans have built dams and impoundments for thousands of years. Indeed, dams are now a ubiquitous feature of the global landscape; there’s no denying this simple fact. Despite providing many societal benefits, however, river regulation by dams has also caused considerable ecological damage and the loss of important ecosystem services valued by society. So how can we make decisions concerning how rivers are harnessed or otherwise used for the benefit of human societies, especially given the inevitably environmental and social conflicts that arise? While it is easy to lamenting these dam(n) problems, will we spend our time together exploring some of the new, exciting, and at times controversial, ways in which dam-impacted rivers are being re-envisioned for the future.

Julian Olden (Primary Presenter/Author), University of Washington, olden@uw.edu;


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11:15 - 11:30: / 310 A HOW INTERDISCIPLINARY APPROACHES TO BIG DATA ANALYTICS CAN STRENGTHEN THE ROLE OF SCIENCE IN DAM DECISIONS

5/22/2018  |   11:15 - 11:30   |  310 A

HOW INTERDISCIPLINARY APPROACHES TO BIG DATA ANALYTICS CAN STRENGTHEN THE ROLE OF SCIENCE IN DAM DECISIONS We outline an approach to help understand and resolve many social-ecological conflicts and uncertainties of dams based on our experiences on a sustainability science research project supported in part by a $6 million NSF grant. Our approach emphasizes the integrative use of big data and numerical models, and crafting usable knowledge through collaborations between > 25 biophysical and social scientists as well as engagement with diverse stakeholders. We draw upon a wide array of data sources to examine trade-offs between multiple ecosystem services, such as hydropower, fish passage, recreation, and water supply, that are valued by stakeholders and impacted by dam decisions at multiple spatial scales. Based on model results, we find numerous opportunities to restore historic diadromous fish habitat while minimizing reductions in other important ecosystem services such as water supply or hydropower. Also, incorporating a greater diversity of dam decision alternatives at watershed scales can lead to improvements for all services. However, careful consideration is needed to match the decision-making scale to social-ecological scales, simultaneously capturing the benefits of watershed-scale ecosystem connectivity and the utility of local ecosystem services for stakeholders.

Emi Uchida (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Rhode Island, euchida@uri.edu;


Karen Wilson (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Southern Maine, karen.wilson@maine.edu;


Shantel Neptune (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Maine, shantel.neptune@maine.edu;


Arthur Gold (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Rhode Island, agold@uri.edu;


Kevin Gardner (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of New Hampshire, Kevin.Gardner@unh.edu;


Sharon Klein (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Maine, sharon.klein@maine.edu;


Emma Fox (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Maine, emma.fox@maine.edu;


Sean Smith (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Maine, sean.m.smith@maine.edu;


Joseph Zydlewski (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), USGS, University of Maine, josephz@maine.edu;


David Hart (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions, University of Maine, Orono, ME, USA, david.hart@umit.maine.edu;


Samuel Roy (Primary Presenter/Author), Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions, University of Maine, samuel.g.roy@maine.edu;


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11:30 - 11:45: / 310 A HYDRODYNAMIC MODELLING WITH BIG DATA IN SUPPORT OF DAM RENEWAL DECISION-MAKING

5/22/2018  |   11:30 - 11:45   |  310 A

HYDRODYNAMIC MODELLING WITH BIG DATA IN SUPPORT OF DAM RENEWAL DECISION-MAKING The Mactaquac Generating Station (MGS), a 672 MW run-of-the-river hydroelectric facility on the main-stem of the Saint John River, New Brunswick, Canada has been in operation since 1968 with a predicted end-of-life of 2030. In 2013, the Canadian Rivers Institute began the Mactaquac Aquatic Ecosystem Study (MAES), a planned, whole-river multidisciplinary ecosystem study and manipulation of the MGS, in support of a decision-making process regarding the future of the aging facility. Future options under consideration ranged from in-situ restoration to full removal and river restoration. This dam renewal will be the largest ever undertaken. Prediction of the potential transport and fate (or long-term retention) of post-inundation sediment and its impact on the river ecosystem, along with changes in flow patterns, were crucial aspects for decision-makers. Four-years of extensive surveys, coupled with historical information, provided multiple sources of big data that were fed into the hydrodynamic model Delft3d including: bathymetry, flood-plain topography, water level, 3D flow direction and velocity, sediment quality and quantity, water quality, and limnology. The resulting output was used in decision-making and in supporting focused models of fish habitat and environmental flows.

Gordon Yamazaki (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of New Brunswick, gordom.yamazaki@unb.ca;


Katy Haralampides (Primary Presenter/Author,Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of New Brunswick, katy@unb.ca;


Mouhamed Ndong (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of New Brunswick, mndong@unb.ca;


Allen Curry (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of New Brunswick, racurry@unb.ca;


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11:45 - 12:00: / 310 A RIVER FRAGMENTATION BY HYDROPOWER IN COSTA RICA AND POTENTIAL IMPACTS FOR FISH FAUNA.

5/22/2018  |   11:45 - 12:00   |  310 A

RIVER FRAGMENTATION BY HYDROPOWER IN COSTA RICA AND POTENTIAL IMPACTS FOR FISH FAUNA. River fragmentation caused by small dams has been overlooked in connectivity assessments. Costa Rica experienced a boom in hydropower development ahead of current global trends, during which many small dams were constructed. We used Costa Rica as a test case to address two questions: (1) What are the effects of widespread hydropower development on river connectivity? and (2) What are the expected consequences of extensive damming on native fish species? Our study found that existing hydropower development has focused mainly in four basins in Costa Rica. Even though these basins have a similar number of dams (19-22), losses in river connectivity from dams varies greatly. The loss in connectivity produced by the small dams and the dewatered segments is non-additive. However, when tested individually both factors (i.e. small dams and dewatered segments) can have the same negative impact on connectivity. Our results suggest that dams have affected a total of 90 species, including nine amphidromous and 10 endemic species. To the best of our knowledge, this work is the first national-scale assessment of the effects of hydropower development on rivers and fishes in Costa Rica.

Jorge Picado-Barboza (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, jpicado@ice.go.cr;


Gerardo Umaña-Villalobos (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Universidad de Costa Rica, gerardo.umana@ucr.ac.cr;


Elizabeth P Anderson (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Florida International University, epanders@fiu.edu;


Aldo Farah-Pérez (Primary Presenter/Author), Florida International University, afara017@fiu.edu;


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12:00 - 12:15: / 310 A HOW DOES FLOW HOMOGENIZATION CHANGE AQUATIC INVERTEBRATE COMMUNITY STRUCTURE AND FUNCTIONAL TRAIT DIVERSITY?

5/22/2018  |   12:00 - 12:15   |  310 A

HOW DOES FLOW HOMOGENIZATION CHANGE AQUATIC INVERTEBRATE COMMUNITY STRUCTURE AND FUNCTIONAL TRAIT DIVERSITY? Flow homogenization by dams threatens riverine ecosystems by removing disturbances, which are important in creating a mosaic of lotic to lentic microhabitats. Implications of habitat simplification from flow homogenization include reducing taxa with an aerial adult stage (available for riparian consumers) and increasing pond-specialist invertebrate taxa with no aerial stage (unavailable for riparian consumers). We examined the effects on aquatic insect communities when natural disturbances are removed by dam flow homogenization (only steady base-flow released). We predicted flow homogenization would decrease aquatic invertebrate species diversity, primarily by allowing beaver to simplify habitats from a mosaic to entirely lentic. We sampled aquatic invertebrates above and below Alamo dam on the Bill Williams River, Arizona, following a series of prescribed flood events (2006-2008) and again after eight years of continuous flow homogenization (2016). NMDS results showed that communities changed after eight years of flow homogenization relative to undammed control sites. However, we also detected a shift in community structure across all sites, possibly due to an increase in beaver activity even in free-flowing control sites. Our data provide a measurement of the ecological deficit incurred from flow homogenization by dams.

David DuBose (Primary Presenter/Author), Oregon State University, dubosed@oregonstate.edu;


Laura McMullen (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oregon State University, laurabethmcm@gmail.com;


Jonathan Tonkin (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oregon State University, jdtonkin@gmail.com;


David Lytle (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Oregon State University, lytleda@oregonstate.edu;


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