Back to top

SFS Annual Meeting

Monday, June 3, 2024
10:30 - 12:00

<< Back to Schedule

S07 Water Doesn't Always Flow Downhill! Dealing with Complex Hydrology and Water Management in Diverse Urban Contexts

10:30 - 10:45 | Independence Ballroom A | OVERCOMING PERVASIVE CHALLENGES IN MAPPING URBAN HYDROGRAPHY AND LANDSCAPE HETEROGENEITY

6/03/2024  |   10:30 - 10:45   |  Independence Ballroom A

Overcoming Pervasive Challenges in Mapping Urban Hydrography and Landscape Heterogeneity Understanding where water is flowing within a watershed is one of the most basic and often complicated questions to answer in hydrology. Urban infrastructure and management actions result in complex hydrological patterns in developed watersheds, which can violate assumptions within a watershed approach to ecosystem science. We will focus on two aspects of urban landscapes that often create challenges to model watershed processes within and among urban centers: (1) consistent mapping of urban flow paths and (2) consistent characterization of the urban landscape within and among cities. Mapping urban flow paths is difficult because of inconsistent and incomplete hydrography and because pipe networks and management actions can alter topographically defined watershed boundaries. There is also often a lack of information on the location and type of water infrastructure and water management actions are difficult to quantify and predict. Characterizing the urban landscape is complicated by the rapid pace of land-cover change, the lack of spatially consistent high-resolution land-cover data, and strong correlations among commonly used land-use metrics. This talk will describe these challenges, why they are important to consider, and identify how certain aspects of these challenges can be avoided or addressed. Examples will highlight lessons learned throughout the Carbon in Urban River Biogeochemistry (CURB) Project that is assessing scales and drivers of variability in dissolved organic carbon across five diverse urban centers. Our goal is to facilitate a dialogue that will help overcome these challenges and advance the applications of watershed approaches in urban ecosystem science.

Kristina Hopkins (Primary Presenter/Author), U.S. Geological Survey, khopkins@usgs.gov;

Krista Capps (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia, kcapps@uga.edu;

Rebecca Hale (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, haler@si.edu;

John Kominoski (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Florida International University, jkominos@fiu.edu;

Jennifer Morse (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Portland State University, jlmorse@pdx.edu;

Allison Roy (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), U.S. Geological Survey, Massachusetts Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, University of Massachusetts Amherst, aroy@eco.umass.edu;

10:45 - 11:00 | Independence Ballroom A | URBAN WATER SECURITY RISK ASSESSMENT AND WATERSHED ZONING SCHEME FOR MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS: A CASE STUDY OF DAR ES SALAAM TANZANIA

6/03/2024  |   10:45 - 11:00   |  Independence Ballroom A

Urban Water Security Risk Assessment and watershed zoning scheme for Management Solutions: A case study of Dar es Salaam Tanzania Zoning different water management areas is important for environmental management and water security. Clean water and sanitation(SGD6) is at the heart of all aspects of UN developed 17 SDGs, however, the implementation of integrated management of water resources is lagging. This paper presents a SDGs-inspired framework for water security risk assessment and watershed zoning management solutions that integrates water-land nexus indices system by GIS-based weighted linear combination analysis. Four dimensions of water security risk assessment system were defined: watershed morphometry, land use and vegetation cover, water environment and socio-economic development impact, by which interdependent and interaction relations between water and land were revealed. Dar es Salaam of Eastern Africa was selected as the location for the case study. The water security risk index (WSRI) was identified for 58 sub-watersheds in Dar es Salaam, influential factors of different WSRI levels were screened with correlation analysis, and spatial aggregation of sub-watersheds were illustrated using clustering analysis. The results showed that urban growth has caused significant changes of land use and led to pollution pressures on urban water security and watershed ecosystems, especially in Africa urban areas. Finally, we proposed management recommendations for urban water security risk control and urban river syndrome alleviation including blue-green space constructions, differentiated and targeted control mechanisms and nature-based ways. Although the priorities for different regional cities vary, the proposed the indicators framework is expected to help urban authorities monitor and track their policy performance over time.

QUN GAO (Primary Presenter/Author), Nanjing Institute of Geography & Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, qgao@niglas.ac.cn;

Qiushi Shen (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Nanjing Institute of Geography & Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, qsshen@niglas.ac.cn;

Ismael Kimirei (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Tanzania Fisheries Research Institute, ismaelkimirei@tafiri.go.tz;

Shuang Chen (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Nanjing Institute of Geography & Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, schens@niglas.ac.cn;

11:00 - 11:15 | Independence Ballroom A | DIFFERENCES BETWEEN TOPOGRAPHICAL AND HYDROLOGICAL WETLAND DRAINAGE AREA: IMPLICATIONS FOR ESTIMATING WETLAND FUNCTIONS

6/03/2024  |   11:00 - 11:15   |  Independence Ballroom A

Differences between topographical and hydrological wetland drainage area: implications for estimating wetland functions Drainage area is a key feature in determining nutrient load entering a wetland, especially used for estimating phosphorus load reduction in non-monitored wetlands and for planning constructed wetlands. However, drainage areas used to estimate nutrient retention in the existing literature are mostly based on topographical wetland drainage area (TOWDA). TOWDA is the area that drains into a wetland with respect to the topography of land surface alone. However, wetlands receive water from multiple surface and subsurface flow paths including tile drains and groundwater. Here we take an expanded view of hydrologic loading into wetlands and define hydrological wetland drainage area (HOWDA), contrast the differences between TOWDA and HOWDA, and explore implications for the accuracy and precision of water and nutrient budget. At landscape and ecosystem scales, HOWDA is rarely considered, likely due to the greater complexity of including sub-surface and unconstrained surface flows in estimating hydrologic inputs and in part due to the limited data on subsurface flows. We present a case study that demonstrates how significant the HOWDA can be for phosphorus budgeting compared to the contemporary use of TOWDA. Through this commentary, we encourage scientists to consider HOWDA in addition to TOWDA in wetland studies to inform management decisions in planning wetland construction for nutrient retention.

Bishwodeep Adhikari (Primary Presenter/Author), Kent State University, badhika6@kent.edu;

Kenneth Anderson (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Kent State University, kande120@kent.edu;

Christine Bahlai (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Kent State University, cbahlai@kent.edu;

David Costello (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Kent State University, dcostel3@kent.edu;

Lauren Kinsman-Costello (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Kent State University, lkinsman@kent.edu;

11:15 - 11:30 | Independence Ballroom A | CONDUCTIVITY ILLUMINATES SEASONALLY SHIFTING FLOWPATHS IN URBAN SALT LAKE COUNTY, UT

6/03/2024  |   11:15 - 11:30   |  Independence Ballroom A

Conductivity illuminates seasonally shifting flowpaths in urban Salt Lake County, UT Canals are a ubiquitous feature of the Western United States. In Salt Lake County, UT, canals carrying water from upstream Utah Lake cross tributaries carrying snowmelt from the Wasatch mountains, eventually draining to the Jordan River. Knowing contributing flowpaths is essential for understanding sources of poor water quality. One tool for identifying flowpaths is conductivity, since conductivity differs among end member flowpaths and is influenced by human behavior. We asked: How do land cover, hydrological modifications, and seasonal shifts in hydrology affect conductivity around Salt Lake City? We measured specific conductivity at 100 locations during four seasons over one year and used in situ sensors to measure specific conductivity at 15-min intervals at nine locations for three years. Spatial patterns of conductivity in Salt Lake City were not consistent seasonally, suggesting that different controls operate during different seasons. During the summer, when flows were generally low and canals were active, conductivity was related to upstream canal-stream crossings. In contrast, during the winter, when canals were not active and road salt was used for deicing urban areas, conductivity was related to road density. High frequency conductivity data identified signatures of road salting (winter peaks), snowmelt (spring dilution), and canal inputs (summer baseflow conductivity more than double winter baseflow conductivity). Variation in seasonal conductivity patterns among watersheds suggested different controls depending on upstream snowpack, hydrologic modifications, and land cover. Our results illustrate the complexity of urban flowpaths and the important role of hydrologic modification and human behavior for urban watershed functioning.

Rebecca Hale (Primary Presenter/Author), Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, haler@si.edu;

Samuel Taylor (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Salt Lake County, samgtaylor90@gmail.com;

Andrew Blinn (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia, andrew.blinn@uga.edu;

Gwendolynn Folk (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Nebraska - Kearney, folkg@lopers.unk.edu;

Jennifer F. Shah (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Utah, follstad@gmail.com;

Kristina Hopkins (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), U.S. Geological Survey, khopkins@usgs.gov;

11:30 - 11:45 | Independence Ballroom A | ASSESSMENT OF THE CONDITION OF STREAM CROSSINGS TO MAINTAIN ECOLOGICAL CONNECTIVITY IN PUERTO RICO'S RIVERS.

6/03/2024  |   11:30 - 11:45   |  Independence Ballroom A

Assessment of the condition of stream crossings to maintain ecological connectivity in Puerto Rico's rivers. Stream crossings in rivers allow water to flow without affecting the connectivity of these aquatic ecosystems. Maintenance and monitoring of these structures is necessary for habitat connectivity in rivers, thus affecting the migratory processes of aquatic fauna. Accumulation of sediments, increased water pollutants, and poor management of sewage systems are some anthropogenic factors accelerating the deterioration of river stream crossings. This research aimed to assess the condition of stream crossings to maintain ecological connectivity in the rivers of Puerto Rico. We evaluated one hundred twenty stream crossings in rivers in rural and urban areas. A random sampling method was used to select ten coastal municipalities with rivers or streams that flow into the sea. We concluded that 60% of the evaluated stream crossings meet the recommendations established by the Guide for maintaining ecological connectivity in stream crossings in rivers and streams of Puerto Rico. We recommend that Citizen and governmental interventions install a monitoring system for these structures to ensure water bodies' connectivity, especially those near river segments that connect to the sea.

Christopher E Orozco González (Primary Presenter/Author), Ana G. Méndez University, corozco5@email.uagm.edu;

11:45 - 12:00 | Independence Ballroom A | EXPANDING CLASSIFICATION OF METABOLIC REGIMES IN URBAN STREAMS

6/03/2024  |   11:45 - 12:00   |  Independence Ballroom A

Expanding Classification of Metabolic Regimes in Urban Streams Seasonal patterns of stream metabolism are often mismatched with terrestrial phenology, and timing of peaks in productivity create an important source of carbon for primary consumers in the riverscape. We hypothesized that urbanization would predictably affect the timing and magnitude of metabolism peaks through effects on hydrology and water quality. This study seeks to classify the heterogeneity within and among metabolic regimes of 12 streams across four major urban centers in the contiguous US to better understand seasonal patterns and drivers of stream metabolism. Time series of dissolved oxygen, temperature, stage depth and discharge collected in 2022 were used to model daily rates of whole-stream metabolism using the StreamMetabolizer package in R, and we used clustering to group streams based on seasonal patterns of gross primary production (GPP) and ecosystem respiration (ER). Among all sites, streams were typically net heterotrophic (ER>GPP), with seasonal peaks of GPP in spring or summer not exceeding ER in magnitude. Seasonal peaks in ER were less distinct than GPP, with high rates in summer and persisting in early winter. Spring GPP peaks were often followed by a summer peak, which could be contributed to urban streams having higher light availability, temperature, and labile DOC than non-urban streams. Classifying metabolic regimes by the timing of seasonal patterns is a developing approach, and our work extends the use of traditional classification techniques to urban drainages. Our results show how complex urban landscapes influence environmental and hydrologic conditions to drive patterns of metabolic regimes within and among cities.

Andrew Blinn (Primary Presenter/Author), University of Georgia, andrew.blinn@uga.edu;

Shuo Chen (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia; University of Florida, schen83@crimson.ua.edu;

Jacob Rudolph (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, rudolphjc@icloud.com;

Samuel Taylor (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Salt Lake County, samgtaylor90@gmail.com;

Annika Quick (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Virginia Wesleyan University, aquick@vwu.edu;

Krista Capps (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia, kcapps@uga.edu;

Rebecca Hale (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, haler@si.edu;

John Kominoski (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Florida International University, jkominos@fiu.edu;