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Godalming, United Kingdom

Wilby R.L.,Loughborough University | Fenn C.R.,CFonstream | Wood P.J.,Loughborough University | Timlett R.,Freshwater Programme | Lequesne T.,Freshwater Programme
Water Resources Research | Year: 2011

Adapting to climate change is just one among many challenges facing river managers. The response will involve balancing the long-term water demands of society with the changing needs of the environment in sustainable and cost effective ways. This paper describes a modeling framework for evaluating the sensitivity of low river flows to different configurations of abstraction licensing under both historical climate variability and expected climate change. A rainfall-runoff model is used to quantify trade-offs among environmental flow (e-flow) requirements, potential surface and groundwater abstraction volumes, and the frequency of harmful low-flow conditions. Using the River Itchen in southern England as a case study it is shown that the abstraction volume is more sensitive to uncertainty in the regional climate change projection than to the e-flow target. It is also found that "smarter" licensing arrangements (involving a mix of hands off flows and "rising block" abstraction rules) could achieve e-flow targets more frequently than conventional seasonal abstraction limits, with only modest reductions in average annual yield, even under a hotter, drier climate change scenario. Copyright 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.

Sayers P.,24a High Street | Sayers P.,University of Oxford | Galloway G.,University of Maryland University College | Penning-Rowsell E.,Middlesex University | And 8 more authors.
International Journal of River Basin Management | Year: 2015

Over recent decades, remarkable progress in cultivating the concepts of flood risk management has taken place across countries as diverse as India, China, Australia, the UK and the USA. This change highlights a risk management paradigm as potentially more complex than a more traditional standard-based approach as it involves ‘whole systems’ and ‘whole-life’ thinking; yet this is also its main strength – paving the way for more integrated and informed decision-making. Strategic flood management (SFM) uses a portfolio of responses to manage flood risks and promote opportunities ecosystem services. It recognizes the interrelationships between the actions taken and the contribution flood management provides to integrated river basin and coastal zone planning. The paper results from an international collaborative effort for research and distils approaches to flood risk and water management in challenging large-scale and complex environments. The paper provides an overview of the emerging good practice in SFM, including (i) an analysis of the flood events that have shaped changes in approach, (ii) the purpose and characteristics of modern SFM, (iii) the goals, objectives and outcomes sought and (iv) the challenges associated with implementation (together with some of the common pitfalls and misconceptions). Our conclusions are encapsulated in a set of ‘golden rules’ that underpin sound SFM decision-making. © 2014 International Association for Hydro-Environment Engineering and Research.

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