CAREER: Ecohydraulics: Simulation of Physical Processes in River Ecosystem Management
9874754 Goodwin This is an award to support research on a process by which all factors that impact on riverine enhancement can be taken into consideration during planning, engineering design and implementation of enhancement procedures. Implementation of river enhancement plans requires an understanding of the complex interactions between and among factors that influence the decision to undertake enhancement and determine their economic cost and benefits. These factors are basically determined by the basin's geomorphology which influences its response to conditions that cause flooding. Basin responses including sediment transport and bank erosion are significantly influenced by changing patterns of development and land use. The investigator has identified study sites in Idaho that are relatively small in scale to use in conduct of this research. These include a pristine, undisturbed site in the Frank Church Wilderness, a logged and heavily mined site on the Red River and a grazed rangeland basin drained by Reynolds Creek in the Owyhee Mountains of southwestern Idaho. Selected heavily urbanized drainage basins selected for study include Wildcat Creek in Richmond, California and San Pedro Creek in Pacifica, California. The hydraulic research objective is expected to focus on the Willamette River between Albany and Salem in Oregon as an example of a large-scale river and the Napa River in California as an intermediate-scale river.
The proposal leading to this award was submitted in response to the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program that emphasizes combining discovery of new knowledge with inspired teaching and enthusiastic learning. The research component of this project is expected to result in better procedures than are now available for relating of the costs of riverine restoration to benefits gained than is now possible. The educational component includes an approach to interest inner-city and rural children in river restoration, introduce undergraduates to ecological restoration by using field-acquired data in undergraduate courses and establishing a project web page and video for the Red River site that will include computer simulations of floods and the geomorphological changes resulting from flooding.