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Barenton, France

Rebelo L.-M.,International Water Management Institute | Johnston R.,SRI International | Hein T.,WasserCluster Lunz | Weigelhofer G.,WasserCluster Lunz | And 3 more authors.
Environmental Science and Policy | Year: 2013

Wetlands are too often perceived as standalone elements and are poorly integrated into river basin management. The Ramsar Convention recognizes the critical linkage between wetlands, water and river basin management; the governments that are party to the Convention have committed to conserving their wetlands within a framework of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM). The "Critical Path" approach and related guidance have been adopted by Contracting Parties of the Ramsar Convention in order to effectively integrate wetland conservation and management into river basin management planning and decision-making. However, despite international acceptance of the approach, it is not widely implemented. This paper provides one of the first case study based assessments of the Critical Path approach. The analysis of two contrasting Ramsar sites is presented in order to better understand the barriers to implementation in different development contexts. These are the Lobau wetland in Austria, where management institutions and regulatory frameworks are highly developed; and the Inner Niger Delta in Mali, where the capacity to implement IWRM is less evolved. A planning approach is proposed which involves structured and transparent methods for assessing ecosystem services and institutional capacity, and is suitable as a tool for identifying, prioritizing and negotiating trade-offs in ecosystem services and improving livelihoods. Based on the analysis, two main barriers to implementation are identified; mismatch between local and national or basin level priorities, and a lack of recognition of the ecosystem services provided by wetlands. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Liersch S.,Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research | Cools J.,University of Geneva | Cools J.,Antea Group | Kone B.,Wetlands International | And 6 more authors.
Environmental Science and Policy | Year: 2013

This manuscript investigates the vulnerability of food security in terms of floating rice production in the Inner Niger Delta to upstream water resources management (reservoir management) and population growth under climate change and variability in the time period 2011-2050. Reservoir management and climate change have large impacts on the inflow patterns into the Inner Niger Delta and thus on the extent and duration of the flooded surface area, which in turn is closely linked to ecological integrity, livelihoods, and food production within the delta region. A vulnerability assessment concept, developed in the framework of the WETwin project, is used to investigate the impacts of existing and planned upstream dams on food demands and supply in the Inner Niger Delta under different climate and population growth scenarios. The impacts on the water balance and inundation patterns were simulated using a process-based eco-hydrological modelling system equipped with an inundation module and a reservoir module. Both projected climate change and upstream reservoir management lead to a significant reduction of peak discharges during the rainy season and hence to serious losses of potential agricultural areas within the Inner Niger Delta. The effectiveness of the planned extension of irrigated rice areas within the Inner Niger Delta, in order to mitigate the losses of areas suitable for floating rice, was investigated as adaptive measure. This land use change fulfils increasing food demands under some scenarios, but at the expense of other ecosystem services and has thus to be critically questioned. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Vanlede J.,Flanders Hydraulics Research | Vanlede J.,Technical University of Delft | Dujardin A.,Flanders Hydraulics Research | Dujardin A.,Antea Group
Ocean Dynamics | Year: 2014

The exchange flow of water and sediment between a harbor and the surrounding waters can be geometrically decomposed into three main components: tidal filling, horizontal, and vertical exchange flows. The method is applied to analyze available measurements at two important harbor basins in Belgium. The geometric analysis can also be applied to the results of a numerical model of hydrodynamics and sediment transport, provided it has sufficient horizontal, vertical, and temporal resolutions to capture the dynamics at the harbor mouth. As such, it can be used as a tool in model calibration. The presented method can provide some insight into the complex relationship (phasing and spatial correlations) between hydrodynamics and sediment concentration that determines harbor siltation. © 2014, The Author(s). Source

Cools J.,University of Geneva | Cools J.,Antea Group | Johnston R.,SRI International | Hattermann F.F.,Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research | And 2 more authors.
Environmental Science and Policy | Year: 2013

This paper provides the synthesis of the special issue on the "role of wetlands in river basin management" and reviews lessons learnt from a comparative assessment of the presented case studies in Europe, Africa and Latin-America. Although wetlands are important for local communities and biodiversity, the services and products they deliver for local livelihoods and river basins are insufficiently known, and inadequately valued and understood by authorities. Wetlands are too often perceived as standalone elements and poorly integrated into river basin management plans.In this volume, an analytical framework is developed to formulate and compare wetland management options, also in data-poor contexts and to bridge the gap between science and policy. The framework is a set of tools and processes to structure the information flows needed to identify and score management options in terms of their impact, feasibility, vulnerability to future changes and trade-offs. In practice, it was found that the framework provided a useful set of tools to promote understanding and underpin negotiations. The major barrier for a better integration of wetlands in river basin management was found to be the lack of understanding of what the important issues were and the institutional capacity to organise cooperation and consequent implementation of the agreed plans.This paper presents the following conclusions. Firstly, rapid assessment tools and simplified scoring methods were used and proved useful in explaining issues across sectors and scales, and were important in creating mutual understanding, even though they did not necessarily present new insights for local or disciplinary experts. Secondly, in order to improve the knowledge base, an integrated database is developed, especially with regard to water quantity simulation at the river basin scale and wetland scale, potential habitat availability and the quantification of adaptive and institutional capacity, including the impact of future changes. Data has been compiled from various, scattered sources, including global data sets, sectoral wetland and/or river basin-specific quantitative and qualitative data sets. Thirdly, in case of limited data availability, rather than improving the accuracy of available quantitative data, it is proposed to better use alternative qualitative sources of data, from local experts, authority representatives and wetland users. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Faber N.,Antea Group
41st International Congress and Exposition on Noise Control Engineering 2012, INTER-NOISE 2012 | Year: 2012

In the Netherlands an inventory has been made of traffic noise reduction measures (good practices) within cities. This inventory is part of the Dutch program "Stiller op Weg" ("Silence on Roads") that is initiated by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment. The aim of the program is to quiet the Dutch cities by reducing traffic noise in urban areas with 3 dB by the year 2020. The "good practices" project will contribute to that goal by gathering examples of traffic noise reduction measures in Dutch cities and publish them for educational purposes. By doing so the use of different kind of noise reducing measures like silent pavements, silent tyres, electrical vehicles e.g. will be stimulated. Stakeholders like provinces, municipalities, producers, developers, consultancies and the general public can take notice of these examples, learn from them, apply them for their own benefit or get inspired to make further innovations. An initial inventory of these good practices has been made and a long list of 103 good practice initiatives of traffic noise reduction measures resulted. From this long list the most successful good practices were put on a short list and worked out in a factsheet. The factsheets of the top 10 good practices were published on a website that is open for all public. On the website each good practice example is described in a summary, with a photo and the location in Google maps. Background information on results, experiences, documents, reports are available as downloads. Stakeholders can also upload new good practice initiatives on the website, with the aim is to create a snowball effect by which the list of good practice projects will steadily grow. It is recommended to set up similar programs in other countries that could learn and benefit from the experiences in The Netherlands. In the end this could lead to an international database of good practices and a quieter environment in which we are living. Copyright © (2012) by the Institute of Noise Control Engineering (INCE). Source

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