Home List of Titles An approach for assessing the physical condition of rivers at the catchment scale
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/225484
- An approach for assessing the physical condition of rivers at the catchment scale
- Harris, C. D.; Thoms, M. C.; Rayburg, S.; Parsons, M.
- Contemporary approaches for assessing the condition of river systems focus primarily on biological information. Increasingly, natural resource managers are becoming interested in the physical condition of river systems. Rivers are naturally complex physical systems that change in time and space, and therefore challenge many traditional scientific approaches for assessing their character. One solution to this problem is the use of hierarchy theory which provides a graded organisational structure to interpret river complexity. However, most geomorphic characterisations of rivers fail to acknowledge the importance of the nested organisation of river systems and scale, thus often misinterpret form-process links. This study outlines a typology for a geomorphic characterisation of rivers that can be used to assess their physical condition. It focuses on a specific level within the geomorphic river hierarchy. For this study, a set of criteria are outlined for developing a quantitative river classification scheme. This involves the use of fifteen geomorphic variables in a desktop based taxonomic river typing scheme. Variables are extracted from digital data, using both an automated GIS module developed specifically for such an exercise and combined with manually extracted data. These physical data are analysed using a series of multivariate analyses. The applicability of the approach is demonstrated in the Namoi catchment, NSW, at the basin scale. The physical condition of the river network is based on the community of river types and is assessed by considering the richness, composition and diversity of river types. The applicability of the approach for river management is also outlined.
- Publication type
- Conference paper
- Proceedings of 'Water down under 2008', incorporating the 31st Hydrology and Water Resources Symposium and the 4th International Conference on Water Resources and Environment Research, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia, 14-17 April 2008 / Martin Lambert, T. M. Daniell and Michael Leonard (ed.), pp. 1879-1889
- Publication year
- Australia; Namoi River; New South Wales; Rivers; Water quality assessment; Water quality management; Water resources management
- Engineers Australia
- 9780858257351, 0858257351
- Publisher URL
- Copyright © 2008 Engineers Australia.
- Peer reviewed