Regulated waterways provide important services such as flood regulation, power generation with low greenhouse gas emissions, and energy storage. Nevertheless, the damming and regulation of rivers incurs ecological costs via the operation of reservoirs and alteration of downstream flows, combined with the often permanent loss of valley bottom habitat. Regulation affects both upstream (reservoir) and downstream environments, and does so at a range of scales. An increase in smaller hydro-electric (i.e. run-of-river) projects has led to a spike in research around their unique impacts, and many of these projects are concluding their 5-10 year monitoring programs. Several multi-year studies on large reservoir systems (e.g., Arrow Lakes and Kinbasket) in the Columbia River basin are also now nearing completion and these results may play a role in determining future operational scenarios under the Columbia River Treaty. Despite their large footprints, considerable ecological function remains in these regulated systems. The wealth of research that continues to emerge increases our understanding of ecosystem processes within regulated rivers with the potential to mitigate footprint and operational impacts to plants, fish, and wildlife.
This 2019 conference, which is a follow-up to the 2015 “Regulated Rivers: Environment, Ecology and Management” conference held in Castlegar, will provide a platform for the dissemination of findings to peers, First Nations, stakeholders, students, and community members from studies that are nearing completion or have been completed since 2015.
Through a keynote address, 2 days of presentations, a poster session, networking opportunities, and field-trips, this conference will provide a cutting-edge opportunity for scientists and managers to share results of recent research on regulated river environments, processes, and operations in the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere. A conference summary will be available on the CMI website after the event.
For more information and registration, please see event page here.