River Restoration; Groundwater; River Floodplains; Hydrology; Stochastic Modelling; SW / GW Interactions
Betterle Andrea, Radny Dirk, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2017), What Do They Have in Common? Drivers of Streamflow Spatial Correlation and Prediction of Flow Regimes in Ungauged Locations, in Water Resources Research
, 53(12), 10354-10373.
Betterle Andrea, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2017), Characterizing the spatial correlation of daily streamflows, in Water Resources Research
, 53(2), 1646-1663.
Doulatyari Behnam, Betterle Andrea, Radny Dirk, Celegon E. A., Fanton Pietro, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2017), Patterns of stream ow regimes along the river network: the case of the Thur river, in Environmental Modelling & Software
Basso Stefano, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2016), A physically based analytical model of flood frequency curves, in Geophysical Research Letters
, (17), 9070-9076.
Basso Stefano, Frascati A., Marani Marco, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2015), Climatic and landscape controls on effective discharge, in Geophysical Research Letters
, (20), 8441-8447.
Basso Stafano, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2015), On the emergence of heavy-tailed streamflow distributions, in ADVANCES IN WATER RESOURCES
Doulatyari Behnam, Betterle Andrea, Basso Stefano, Biswal Basudev, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2015), Predicting streamflow distributions and flow duration curves from landscape and climate, in Advances in Water Resources
Doulatyari Behnam, Basso Stefano, Schirmer Mario, Botter Gianluca (2014), River flow regimes and vegetation dynamics along a river transect, in Advances in Water Resources
Principal Investigator:Mario Schirmer, Eawag, Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and TechnologyMain Collaborator:Gianluca Botter, University of Padova (Italy)1.Summary of the research planThe research program aims to lay the foundations for a quantitative analysis of the role played by streamflow regimes in shaping the ecological and biogeochemical services provided by river-floodplains and their ecosystems. In order to achieve this long-term goal, we will comprehensively investigate the impact of streamflow temporal variability on the behavior of river-floodplain-groundwater systems, showing the critical links with the underlying hydrologic, geomorphic and climatic processes. The new insight emerging from the research will be particularly useful to predict the impacts of climate change and evolving regulations on riverine ecosystems and to preserve the ecological value of fluvial systems, which are particularly valuable tasks in view of the increased anthropogenic pressure on climate and freshwaters. This would also serve as a basis to better define the long-term objectives of river restoration projects. Specifically, our investigation will be carried out by focusing on the following intertwined aspects of the eco-hydrologic functioning of river-floodplain-groundwater systems: stream habitat, stream-floodplain-groundwater connectivity, riparian vegetation and sediment transport. We will first define the role played by the shape of river cross sections in modulating the variability features of streamflows, to identify the signatures of climate/landscape attributes and river forms on stage fluctuations and stream habitat suitability for different biological populations. We shall then analyze the relevant stream-groundwater interactions, the extent of the aquatic/terrestrial transition zones (areas only temporarily flooded) and their connectivity with the main river course as a function of the streamflow regime. The implications in terms of the amount of resources coming into rivers from the adjoined floodplains will be also analyzed. The characterization of the aquatic-terrestrial interfaces in rivers will provide a basis for a quantitative description of the relationship between the stochastic character of water availability and the dynamics of riparian vegetation, whose spatial and temporal patterns strongly influence the river biodiversity. The dynamics of riparian vegetation will be analyzed with particular emphasis on the multifaced interactions between biotic (vegetation features) and abiotic factors (groundwater and soil moisture, in turn controlled by the flow regime). Later on, the impact of streamflow regimes on sediment transport will be also analyzed with the goal of providing a probabilistic characterization of the sediment load transported by rivers, with implications for river morphodynamics and stream ecology studies, as well as for reservoir management problems. The models developed in the research project explicitly include the stochastic variability of hydrologic forcings and distinguish themselves by the availability of analytical solutions, which allow for a quick but rigorous characterization of complex eco-hydrological processes. These features can be of particular interest for engineering and consulting companies, which could potentially achieve significant advantages in term of lower costs and time consumption. Therefore, an additional long-term objective of this research project is to transfer the knowledge acquired and to make the stochastic tools developed and tested available to the industry and real world applications.