Effects of human alterations on the hydrodynamics and sediment transport in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, California

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Abstract

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, California, (Delta) has been significantly altered since the mid-nineteenth century. Many existing channels have been widened or deepened and new channels have been created for navigation and water conveyance. Tidal marshes have been drained and leveed to form islands that have subsided, some of which have permanently flooded. To understand how these alterations have affected hydrodynamics and sediment transport in the Delta, we analysed measurements from 27 sites, along with other spatial data, and previous literature. Results show that: (a) the permanent flooding of islands results in an increase in the shear velocity of channels downstream, (b) artificial widening and deepening of channels generally results in a decrease in shear velocity except when the channel is also located downstream of a flooded island, (c) 1.5 Mt/year of sediment was deposited in the Delta (1997–2010), and of this deposited sediment, 0.31 Mt/year (21%) was removed through dredging.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Conference Paper
Publication Subtype Conference Paper
Title Effects of human alterations on the hydrodynamics and sediment transport in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, California
DOI 10.5194/piahs-367-399-2015
Volume 367
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS)
Contributing office(s) California Water Science Center
Description 8 p.
Larger Work Type Conference Paper
Larger Work Title Proceedings of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences
First page 399
Last page 406
Conference Title International Association of Hydrological Sciences
Conference Location New Orleans, Louisiana
Conference Date 11–14 December 2014
Country United States
State California
Other Geospatial Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N