Navigation Links
Putting ecology back into river restoration

An ambitious plan is under way in the ecological community to agree a set of standards for ecologically successful river restoration. The plan is being led by the British Ecological Society's Journal of Applied Ecology, which this month is publishing a special profile on river restoration. Opening the debate is a paper by 22 leading US river ecologists proposing five criteria for ecologically successful river restoration. Their aim is to arrive at an agreed set of standards which would eventually be endorsed by the United Nations Environment Programme.

Although billions of dollars are spent on river restoration projects worldwide, little agreement exists on how their success is measured. According to lead author Dr Margaret Palmer of the University of Maryland: "Given the rapid rate of global degradation of fresh waters, and the fact that river and stream restoration has become a booming enterprise, it is time to agree on what constitutes successful river and stream restoration." Palmer and her colleagues say that the success of river restoration should be judged according to five criteria: a guiding image; improving ecosystems; increasing resilience; doing no lasting harm; and completing an ecological assessment.

The first step should be articulating a "guiding image" describing the ecologically healthy river that could exist at a given site. The second step should be to demonstrate that there have been measurable changes towards the guiding image, such as larger fish populations and clearer water. Palmer et al stress that restoration success should not be viewed as an all-or-nothing, single endpoint, but as an adaptive process where small improvements build up and lessons are learned from any failures.

The third criteria for successful river restoration is to create hydrological, geomorphological and ecological conditions that allow the river to be a resilient, self-sustaining system. The fourth criteria is to do no lasting harm. "For exampl e, a channel modification project should minimise loss of native vegetation during river reconstruction, and should avoid the fish spawning season for construction work," Palmer explains. The final criteria is ecological assessment. According to Palmer: "It is critical that the broad restoration community, including funding agencies, practitioners and citizen restoration groups, adopt criteria for defining and assessing ecological success in restoration. Standards are needed because progress in the science and practice of river restoration has been hampered by the lack of agreed upon criteria for judging ecological success."

The debate is timely given the many waterfront regeneration projects under way worldwide. But, Palmer argues, many such schemes lack an ecological dimension. "Riverfront revitalisation projects many be successful in increasing economic and social activity near a river, but can constrain natural processes of the river and floodplain. Projects labelled restoration successes should not be assumed to be ecological successes," Palmer says.


'"/>

Source:Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


Related biology news :

1. Putting an old drug to a new use
2. Diverse tropical forests defy metabolic ecology models
3. UMaine teams with fishermen to study affects of trawling on seafloor ecology
4. Amber reveals ecology of 30 million year old spiders
5. On the track of tiny larvae, a new model elucidates connections in marine ecology
6. Different strategies underlie the ecology of microbial invasions
7. Discovery of new cave millipedes casts light on Arizona cave ecology
8. Amazon source of 5-year-old river breath
9. Once given no respect, cells tiny RNAS take drivers seat
10. Driver of anthrax toxicity could lead to late-stage therapy
11. Contaminants linked to sturgeon decline in Columbia river
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:1/13/2016)... , January 13, 2016 ... the addition of the  "India Biometrics ... & Forecast (2015-2020)"  report to ... ) has announced the addition of ... Market - Estimation & Forecast (2015-2020)" ...
(Date:1/11/2016)... -- higi, the leading retail and omni-channel community engagement platform ... mobile, today announced it has closed funding of ... --> --> The ... health platform – its network of health stations, ... services and programs to retail partners and healthcare ...
(Date:1/8/2016)... 2016 NXTD ), a company ... , a privately held leading direct seller of vacation ... 5000 fastest-growing company announced that on December 31, 2015, ... in Nxt-ID to develop a proprietary new wireless smart ... , a unique smart wallet that serves to securely ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... February 10, 2016 , ... HOLLOWAY AMERICA, a leading custom ... Rocky Mountain Chapter 21st Annual Vendor Exhibition on Thursday, February 18, 2016. The ... for its annual event, which will run from 3:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... San Mateo, CA (PRWEB) , ... February 10, ... ... Registry of Multiplex Testing (PROMPT), a research registry built on the secure online ... in September 2014. More than 1,600 participants have joined the PROMPT study, which ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... , ... Cenna Bioscience Inc., an emerging biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery ... has been selected to present at the Cavendish Global Health Impact Forum taking place ... purpose of the Forum is to help family offices and foundations develop and implement ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... , Feb. 9, 2016  Regenicin, Inc. ... company specializing in the development and commercialization of ... damaged tissues and organs, recently reported the Company,s ... first quarter of 2016. Lonza America ... new 2015 fiscal year in the process of ...
Breaking Biology Technology: