Fluvial sediment in the environment: a national challenge

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Abstract

Sediment and sediment-associated constituents can contribute substantially to water-quality impairment. In the past, sediment was viewed mainly as an engineering problem that affected reservoir storage capacity, shipping channel maintenance, and bridge scour, as well as the loss of agricultural soil. Sediment is now recognized as a major cause of aquatic system degradation in many rivers and streams as a result of light attenuation, loss of spawning substrate due to fine-grained sediment infilling, reduction in primary productivity, decreases in biotic diversity, and effects from sediment-associated chemical constituents. Recent advances in sediment measurement, assessment, source-identification, and analytical protocols provide new capabilities to quantify sediment and solid-phase chemical fluxes in aquatic systems. Developing, maintaining, and augmenting current sediment- and water-quality-monitoring networks is essential for determining the health of U.S. waterways and for evaluating the effectiveness of management actions in reducing sediment-related problems. The application of new scientific capabilities that address the adverse effects of sediment and sediment- associated constituents represents a major step in managing the Nation’s water quality. A robust Federal, national-scale eff rt, in collaboration with vested stakeholders, is needed to address these sediment-related water-quality issues across the United States.

Additional publication details

Publication type Conference Paper
Publication Subtype Conference Paper
Title Fluvial sediment in the environment: a national challenge
Year Published 2010
Language English
Publisher ACWI
Contributing office(s) Office of the Chief Scientist for Water, Office of Surface Water
Description 14 p.
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Conference publication
Larger Work Title Proceedings of the Joint Federal Interagency Conference 2010: Hydrology and Sedimentation for a Changing Future: Existing and Emerging Issues
Conference Title Joint Federal Interagency Conference 2010: Hydrology and Sedimentation for a Changing Future: Existing and Emerging Issues
Conference Location Las Vegas, NV
Conference Date June 27-July 1, 2010