A 'Watershed-Scale Sediment Information Network' (WaSSIN), designed to complement UNESCO's International Sedimentation Initiative, was endorsed as an initial project by the World Association for Sedimentation and Erosion Research. WaSSIN is to address global fluvial-sediment information needs through a network approach based on consistent protocols for the collection, analysis, and storage of fluvial-sediment and ancillary information at smaller spatial scales than those of the International Sedimentation Initiative. As a second step of implementation, it is proposed herein that the WaSSIN have a general structure of two components, (1) monitoring and data acquisition and (2) research. Monitoring is to be conducted in small watersheds, each of which has an established database for discharge of water and suspended sediment and possibly for bed load, bed material, and bed topography. Ideally, documented protocols have been used for collecting, analyzing, storing, and sharing the derivative data. The research component is to continue the collection and interpretation of data, to compare those data among candidate watersheds, and to determine gradients of fluxes and processes among the selected watersheds. To define gradients and evaluate processes, the initial watersheds will have several common attributes. Watersheds of the first group will be: (1) six to ten in number, (2) less than 1000 km2 in area, (3) generally in mid-latitudes of continents, and (4) of semiarid climate. Potential candidate watersheds presently include the Weany Creek Basin, northeastern Australia, the Zhi Fanggou catchment, northern China, the Eshtemoa Watershed, southern Israel, the Metsemotlhaba River Basin, Botswana, the Aiuaba Experimental Basin, Brazil, and the Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed, southwestern United States.
Additional publication details
Structure and composition of a watershed-scale sediment information network