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SFS Annual Meeting

Thursday, June 6, 2024
13:30 - 15:00

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C36 Water Resource Management

13:30 - 13:45 | Freedom Ballroom H/G | INVESTIGATION OF HYDROLOGY, SEDIMENT, AND NITRATE EXPORT FROM THE TROPICAL TRANSBOUNDARY CATCHMENT IN SREPOK RIVER BASIN OF THE LOWER MEKONG BASIN

6/06/2024  |   13:30 - 13:45   |  Freedom Ballroom H/G

Investigation of hydrology, sediment, and nitrate export from the tropical transboundary catchment in Srepok River Basin of the Lower Mekong Basin Water resources management is crucial for maintaining water quality, especially the Mekong River which is experiencing rapid population growth, economic development, and agricultural expansion. Those changes have potential effects on biodiversity, ecological productivity, and local communities. Soil and Water Assessment Tools (SWAT) is a power tool for improving streamflow simulation in order to assess sediment and nitrate export from the Srepok River Basin (SPB) to the Lower Mekong River Basin (LMB). As result, model performance has very good streamflow from period 2000-2011 at Lumphat station (NSE=0.82, R2=0.86, and PBIAS=+15.3%) while sediment has very good performance of Lumphat and Bandon stations from period 2004-2010 (NSE=0.90, R2=0.92, PBIAS=+12.4%, and NSE=0.82, R2=0.87, PBIAS=+13.2%, respectively). Nitrate has a good performance between 2004-2009 at Lumphat station (NSE=0.72, R2=0.81, and PBIAS=-5.5%). The annual average sediment load was 590 × 103 tons/year while the annual average nitrate load was 5800 tons/year transport from SPB to LMB. The annual average sediment yield was 1100 tons/km2/year when the annual average nitrate yield was 400 kg/km2/year flowing from SPB. An amount of 750 kg/km2/year of nitrate yield which was a loss from 50% of the forest and 5% of agriculture, was released average nitrate yield rate of 1500 kg/km2/year. These findings are beneficial as key information for future research related to sediment and nitrate, as influenced by land use change, which may potentially result in a complex change to local and downstream riverine ecosystems.

Romduol Khoeun (Primary Presenter/Author), Institute of Technology of Cambodia , khoeunromduol97@gmail.com;

13:45 - 14:00 | Freedom Ballroom H/G | MONITORING FOR EARLY WARNING IN THE GREAT LAKES

6/06/2024  |   13:45 - 14:00   |  Freedom Ballroom H/G

Monitoring for Early Warning in the Great Lakes The International Joint Commission (IJC) has a defined role in the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement to address emerging issues, but there is no formal process for identifying such threats. IJC undertook a two-phase project to develop an organizational approach and decision framework for a Great Lakes Early Warning System (GLEWS) to define the process by which different risks posed by existing and potential threats and stressors are evaluated and subsequently communicated and mitigated. While the primary audience for the GLEWS is the federal governments of the U.S. and Canada, other government entities are likely interested in this activity. Two workgroups were assembled to guide the development of this framework: the first recommended that the IJC create a GLEWS Committee that would operate as an entity reporting to the Great Lakes Water Quality Board, which in turn would alert the Commission to prioritize suspected or emerging stressors. The second workgroup proposed a process by which known, suspected, and unknown threats could be monitored and tracked; existing monitoring data, predictive models, and analytical tools could be identified; and a library of threats could be compiled to be revisited for further action if not deemed a priority. A pilot project to test the framework was recommended and a proposal is being evaluated.

Lucinda Johnson (Primary Presenter/Author), University of Minnesota Duluth, ljohnson@d.umn.edu;

Michael Twiss (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Algoma University, michael.twiss@algomau.ca;

Matthew Child (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), International Joint Commission, matthew.child@ijc.org;

Lizhu Wang (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), International Joint Commission, Great Lakes Office, wangl@windsor.ijc.org;

John Bratton (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), LimnoTech, jbratton@limno.com;

Tad Slawecki (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), LimnoTech, tslawecki@limno.com;

Mike Donahue (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), AE Com, michael.donahue@aecom.com;

14:00 - 14:15 | Freedom Ballroom H/G | WHERE DO AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS FIT INTO WATERSHED ADAPTATION AND MITIGATION GOVERNANCE? A NETWORK BASED CONTENT ANALYSIS FROM COASTAL LOUISIANA

6/06/2024  |   14:00 - 14:15   |  Freedom Ballroom H/G

Where do aquatic ecosystems fit into watershed adaptation and mitigation governance? A network based content analysis from coastal Louisiana In recent years, several US states have embraced watershed-based flood and disaster mitigation strategies, emphasizing regional investment and multi-jurisdictional coordination. While these initiatives primarily focus on hazards and flooding, they carry significant implications for watershed aquatic resources. They offer opportunities to safeguard aquatic ecosystems within broader regional planning frameworks but also pose threats to watershed functions if traditional flood hazard mitigation, which does not consider nature, is prioritized. As states implement watershed governance, questions arise about how local planning aligns with regional watershed management and the potential need for new capacities and networks to bridge gaps. At the regional level, aquatic ecosystems are influenced by various local governance sub-systems such as land use, hazard mitigation, and transportation planning. Analyzing plans at the watershed level can reveal the coordination and integration of policies across jurisdictions and the consideration given to aquatic resources. We present a case study focusing on Louisiana's Watershed Initiative (LWI), which adopted integrative watershed management approaches, including a Nature-Based Solutions Program. This study introduces a plan content analysis methodology to assess multi-jurisdictional coordination, facilitating governance structure decisions. It involves extracting relational data from qualitative plan content to construct networks analyzed using quantitative social-ecological network analysis (SENA) measures, an interdisciplinary approach combining social network analysis (SNA) with environmental issues. This approach can pinpoint stakeholders whose decisions impact aquatic ecosystems, identify regional planning network structures spanning watershed scales, and inform policy prioritization, as well as evaluate the socio-ecological fit of local planning networks for the integrative management of aquatic ecosystems.

Thomas Douthat (Primary Presenter/Author), Louisiana State University, tdouthat1@lsu.edu;

14:15 - 14:30 | Freedom Ballroom H/G | A LOGIC MODEL APPROACH TO EVALUATING HOW ECOSYSTEM SERVICES AND EQUITY FIT INTO BENEFIT-COST ANALYSIS FRAMEWORKS

6/06/2024  |   14:15 - 14:30   |  Freedom Ballroom H/G

A Logic Model Approach to Evaluating How Ecosystem Services and Equity Fit into Benefit-Cost Analysis Frameworks Flood hazard mitigation and adaptation necessitate assessing various scenarios involving structural, non-structural, and nature-based projects. Evaluating these projects involves considering their impact on average annual losses to structures, as well as ecosystem services (ES) and social co-benefits. Decision-makers typically weigh the costs and benefits of mitigation projects to choose the most advantageous option. While Benefit-Cost Analysis (BCA) frameworks exist, integrating environmental and social components poses new challenges. Valuing ecosystem services varies by project and location, complicating the assessment of disaster events' specific impacts and project beneficiaries. To promote socially cost-effective projects, BCA frameworks should monetize the full impact of projects, including both positive and negative aspects. However, integrating these impacts into watershed assessments is difficult. BCA approaches should comprehensively evaluate tradeoffs across interests, considering downstream impacts and adhering to legislative mandates. Logic models (LM) have been used in environmental management to understand project consequences, link impacts across social and environmental systems, and identify affected communities. Various conceptual models for ecosystem services and social co-benefits aim to enhance clarity and credibility in framing socio-ecological interactions. Our work uses comparative Logic Models (LM) to demonstrate how BCA approaches for flood hazard mitigation measure costs, benefits, and equity for ecosystem services and assess how they may address: A) The effects of projects on downstream risk and methods for monetizing these effects comprehensively, and B) The distributional impacts on different populations. In so doing, our work will build transparent processes for the application of multiple decision support instruments for ES valuation within watersheds.

Fahmida Akhter (Primary Presenter/Author), Louisiana State University , fakhte1@lsu.edu;

Thomas Douthat (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Louisiana State University, tdouthat1@lsu.edu;

14:30 - 14:45 | Freedom Ballroom H/G | USING NATIONAL MONITORING DATA TO EVALUATE THE EFFICACY OF ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY: A CASE STUDY ON NUTRIENT POLLUTION.

6/06/2024  |   14:30 - 14:45   |  Freedom Ballroom H/G

Using national monitoring data to evaluate the efficacy of environmental policy: a case study on nutrient pollution. Environmental policy is often set at the national level and implemented by state or local governmental units which creates heterogeneity in policy application. Heterogeneity across jurisdictional boundaries creates an opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of policy by assessing correlations between implementation and outcomes. In the United Sates, the Clean Water Act (CWA) is the primary legislation governing water quality in aquatic habitats. The CWA delegates much of its implementation authority to the states, allowing states to act as “laboratories of democracy” and pursue mutual goals through diverse means. Data collected as part of national monitoring assessments provides a basis to compare and estimate the magnitude of policy effects across states. In this case study, we used National Aquatic Resources Survey data to estimate state-level changes in nutrient concentrations and quantified the effects of several variables aligned with CWA policy implementation. At the state scale, we did not find evidence to support an effect of (i) grant spending on nonpoint source pollution remediation, (ii) nutrient criteria development, or (iii) water quality monitoring intensity on state-level trends in nutrient concentrations. We highlight how to incorporate uncertainty in environmental data into the evaluation of policy effects as well as several challenges with this approach. Propagating uncertainty is particularly important as national monitoring programs sample at a relatively low intensity – and the level of certainty about mean conditions or trends varies across states. This case study serves as a framework for using national monitoring data as a tool for understanding environmental policy efficacy.

Nathan Tomczyk (Primary Presenter/Author), University of Georgia, nathan.tomczyk@gmail.com;

Laura Naslund (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia, laura.naslund@duke.edu;

Carolyn Cummins (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), The University of Georgia, carolynsc1225@gmail.com;

Emily Bell (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia, evbell@uga.edu;

Phillip Bumpers (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia, bumpersp@gmail.com;

Amy Rosemond (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Georgia, rosemond@uga.edu;

14:45 - 15:00 | Freedom Ballroom H/G | COMMUNITY-ENGAGED SCIENCE TO CO-PRODUCE SUSTAINABLE STRATEGIES FOR FRESHWATER MANAGEMENT: LESSONS AND VISIONING FROM THE INTERMOUNTAIN WEST, USA

6/06/2024  |   14:45 - 15:00   |  Freedom Ballroom H/G

COMMUNITY-ENGAGED SCIENCE TO CO-PRODUCE SUSTAINABLE STRATEGIES FOR FRESHWATER MANAGEMENT: LESSONS AND VISIONING FROM THE INTERMOUNTAIN WEST, USA A transformation has been occurring in the way freshwater scientists envision and practice research. Rather than one-way “delivery” of scientific findings to communities, resource managers, and policy-makers, researchers increasingly engage with communities in purposeful co-design of studies responsive to community needs, with the aim of co-producing scientific understanding that has particular, contextual applications. This shift is driven by urgent demand for joint, sustainable management of freshwater ecosystems and the human communities to which they are reciprocally linked. Though it has been underway for decades, no “recipe” has emerged for its success. Rather, there has been plenty of trial and error. This has been especially true when it has come to scientists’ attempts to engage with marginalized, and historically colonized, communities. Here I offer cases in point, highlighting efforts and the lessons learned from both successes and mistakes, drawing on 20 years of partnerships with communities in the Intermountain West, USA. These include collaborations with my home community of Pocatello, Idaho, relationship-building and partnerships with the Shoshone-Bannock Tribal community, and practicing science of and for an array of rural communities of the Snake River basin that encompass an increasingly complex and changing suite of stakeholders and rightsholders with diverse attitudes and values when it comes to freshwater ecosystems and organisms. Lessons include pursuing outcomes beyond traditional scholarly achievement, showing up as an engaged community member, doing homework to link social and ecological approaches, and committing to learning and authentic practicing of decolonizing methodologies.

Colden Baxter (Primary Presenter/Author), Idaho State University, baxtcold@isu.edu;