- Water and Environment as a critical components of Circular Economy
Circular Economy is a rapidly developing strategy that promotes greater resource productivity and reduces waste production and emission of pollutants. It becomes the successor of the traditional linear model which is currently recognized as “take, make and dispose” approach, where negative impacts have been exponentially growing. Circular Economy is a critical compound of sustainable development, that cannot be completely achieved without responsible economic model.
Water is one of a major drivers that are shaping energy flow in natural ecosystems, therefore it is fundamental to connect the strategy of Circular Economy with Ecohydrology, not only at the level of water reuse and effective usage, as its postulated so far. Ecohydrology as a holistic and integrative science, through its models, provides the solution that could stimulate the development of Circular Economy and increase resilience of ecosystems to climatic instabilities. To ensure sustainable future we need to enhance the ecosystem potential, especially in face of Climate Change and growing Water Scarcity. Understanding of water, organic matter and nutrients interplay may lead to innovative solutions and to transfer available carbon more effectively into non-available pool.
This session is devoted to the integration of knowledge and frameworks of Circular Economy and Ecohydrology. The special invitation is given to the representatives of governmental and decision makers and to the private sector (industry and business).
- SIL SESSION: Limnology and Ecohydrology for Nature-Based Solutions
Limnology is closely related to aquatic ecology and hydrobiology, by studying life histories of organisms and their interactions in the food webs with respect to physical, chemical, and biological properties of the environment. The increased degradation of water resources has induced the limnological studies to focus on identifying and understanding the symptoms of human manipulations and disturbances in water ecosystems. Thus, limnology has become the basis for the development of ecohydrology and then for the elaboration of nature-based solutions of environmental problems. Integration of limnological knowledge with ecohydrological models and principles provides the scientific background for regulating the processes and interactions for enhancing water resources, restoring and maintaining biodiversity, providing ecosystem services for societies and building resilience to climatic and anthropogenic impacts. The aim of this session is the discussion on integration of ecohydrological biotechnologies with enhancement of sustainable potential towards mitigation and/or adaptation to climate changes. We want to pay a special attention to the role of environmental monitoring and assessment of its quality, as well as efficiency of ecohydrological solutions and ecosystem biotechnologies for solving existing problems in aquatic ecosystems.
- AMBER - adaptive barrier management to help reconnect Europe’s rivers
The AMBER project (funded from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 689682) stands for Adaptive Management of Barriers in European Rivers. The AMBER project seeks to apply adaptive management to the operation of dams and barriers in European rivers to achieve a more efficient restoration of stream connectivity, and address impacts caused by river fragmentation. More on: www.amber.international
AMBER will apply adaptive barrier management to help reconnect Europe’s rivers, the smart way.
- Create- the first global assessment of stream connectivity across Europe, which will serve to highlight the areas where restoration is most needed.
- Make- the first application of eDNA for river restoration, and provide an essential management tool for the prioritization of areas for conservation and barrier management.
- Develop- a comprehensive socio-economic and hydro-ecological framework for guiding the restoration of local river ecosystems and the ecological, genetic and analytical tools for its implementation.
- Provide- unparalleled opportunities for real time monitoring by turning citizens into stewards of the river’s natural capital using citizen science.
To participate in this session we would like to invite experts and researchers working in the above mentioned topics. Discussion will focus on the importance and meaning of dams and barriers in river systems.
- Ecohydrology, Nature-Based Solutions and Circular Economy for the City of Future
Urban systems are already under a pressure of more than a half of the world population and this rate is expected to continue increasing (UNEP). For that reason cities will have to process large and still increasing flux of nutrients and energy, and should be considered as hot spots of metabolism of the Anthropocene. The urban water and heat flows in cities are characterised with more variability and intensity than in natural conditions. Limited infiltration, increased runoff and pollution loads with organic and toxic substances, often lead to direct severe impacts on a range of ecosystem services. In particular, they limit self-purification capacity of urban rivers, groundwater refilling and cooling capacities, and biodiversity of both terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. This is the result of ageing assets and old management practices generating waste of resources.
A more integrated approach to the urban water cycle and natural capital management is necessary for the City of the Future, including cities in expansion or retrofitting. The objective is to limit the negative impact of urbanisation and climate change, and take benefit of the energy that surface runoff and sewage waters contains. We have already developed a range of nature-based solutions aiming at reducing the source of fast water transfer or using natural processes to metabolize organic matter and produce biomass or energy. Less used but of future interest is integration of the natural and engineered processes in cities revitalisation, such as the withdrawing of heat flow carried by sewer pipes to warm buildings, urban agriculture (Water, Food, Energy Nexus) and urban greening (Nature-Based Solutions and Blue-Green Infrastructure). The city of the future is aiming to make an efficient use of the energy flows that are related to water and biota, as to create economical and environmental benefits instead of loosing energy. The ecohydrological concept brings an operational template to develop this approach and prevent future urban land uses from deterioration of natural carrying capacity. Abstracts addressing original works and (or) applications of the above mentioned thematic area are welcomed to this session.
4th symposium of Healthy Rivers and Sustainable Water Resource Management: Reservoir carbon cycling and GHG fluxes: from the perspective of Ecohydrology for Mitigation and Adaptation to Climate Change.
Dam construction and reservoir creation are traditional water engineering approach to provide various services to human society, e.g. hydropower production, flood control, irrigation, navigation, fish farming, etc. However, the alternation of land-use and hydrology in regional or catchment scale by reservoir impoundments significantly impacts biogeochemical cycling of carbon, and regulates source-and-sink of greenhouse gases (GHG), mainly CH4, CO2 and N2O, contributing to global climate change potentially.
The past decades witnessed growing worldwide concerns on reservoir GHG emissions. Monitoring, modelling, and assessment of reservoir GHG emissions have been widely carried out in worldwide reservoirs. Nevertheless, uncertainties regarding fate and transport of carbon in reservoir and how carbon influences ecosystem functioning through regulating other limnological components in the catchment persist. New data and technological research are required for novel insights.
Ecohydrology allows controlling stocks and fluxes of water and nutrients in catchment to maintain a sustainable biogeochemical cycling. From the perspective of reservoir GHG emissions, the concept of ecohydrology implies to mitigate reservoir GHG emissions, especially CH4 emissions; to reduce the risk of unrelated anthropogenic sources; and to optimize reservoir operation and management strategies.
In this Symposium, the following topics are encouraged:
- GHG emissions from different pathways in reservoir: spatio-temporal heterogeneity and upscaling in the face of global change.
- Fate and transport of carbon in river-reservoir continuum: from metabolisms of aquatic ecosystem to carbon fluxes in terrestrial-aquatic interface.
- The net effect of dam construction and reservoir creation: the importance of pre-impoundment GHG emissions and from unrelated anthropogenic sources.
- Mitigating excess GHG emissions from reservoirs in the concept of ecohydrology: state-of-the-art and future challenges