149 results found
Patiño S, Hernández Y, Plata C, et al., 2021, Influence of land use on hydro-physical soil properties of Andean páramos and its effect on streamflow buffering, Catena, Vol: 202, Pages: 1-14, ISSN: 0341-8162
The páramos biome of the northern Andes is a collection of high-mountain tropical grassland wetland ecosystems that provides important ecosystem services including hydrological buffering and water supply. Human activities in these ecosystems transform vegetation cover and soil hydro-physical properties, affecting their hydrological performance and water quality and quantity. Here, we conducted a systematic review on the influence of land use (agriculture, livestock grazing, and afforestation) on the hydro-physical properties of páramo soils and analyzed its implications for streamflow buffering. Our review protocol identified 32 relevant papers, from which key hydro-physical properties linked to streamflow variability were available: soil organic matter (SOM), soil organic carbon (SOC), porosity, bulk density, saturated hydraulic conductivity, and water retention capacity (WRC). The analysis shows that soils with native cover are characterized by a porous structure that allows a high WRC and SOM content. Agriculture increases macroporosity but it leads to bare fallow plots that promote loss of nutrients and SOM. Burning generates hydrophobic aggregates that affect WRC. Livestock grazing produces soil compaction and increases bulk density, reducing infiltration and WRC. Lastly, afforestation with exotic species (e.g. pines, eucalyptus) decreases SOM and WRC by changing soil structure. In general, the analyzed land-use activities generate hydrophobic aggregates, increase bulk density, promote erosion and runoff, and impair hydrological buffering capacity. This integrated evidence from multiple empirical studies can be used to effectively communicate the effects of different land use practices on páramo soils, provide information for modelling in data-scarce situations, and contribute to decision making processes for land use planning and conservation.
Zogheib C, Ochoa-Tocachi BF, Moulds S, et al., 2021, A methodology to downscale water demand data with application to the Andean region (Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile), Hydrological Sciences Journal, Vol: 66, Pages: 630-639, ISSN: 0262-6667
Mountainous regions are a hotspot for water scarcity and anthropogenic pressure on water resources. Substantial uncertainty surrounds projections of future climate and water availability. Furthermore, quantitative and distributed data on water demand are generally scarce, dispersed, and highly heterogeneous. This forms a major bottleneck to studying water resources issues and developing strategies to improve water resource management. Here we present a methodology to produce and evaluate high-resolution gridded maps of anthropogenic surface water demand with application to the Andean region. These data are disaggregated according to the major types of water demand: domestic users, irrigated area, and hydropower. This dataset was built by homogenizing, integrating, and interpolating data obtained from various national institutions in charge of water resource management as well as relevant global datasets. The maps can be used to research anthropogenic impacts on water resources, and to guide regional decision-making in regions such as the Andes.
Pandeya B, Uprety M, Paul JD, et al., 2021, Mitigating flood risk using low-cost sensors and citizen science: A proof-of-concept study from western Nepal, Journal of Flood Risk Management, Vol: 14, Pages: 1-13, ISSN: 1753-318X
The generation of hydrological data for accurate flood predictions requires robust and, ideally, dense monitoring systems. This requirement is challenging in locations such as the Himalayas, which are characterised by unpredictable hydroclimatic behaviour with dramatic small‐scale spatial and temporal variability. River level monitoring sensors that are affordable and easy‐to‐operate could support flood risk management activities in the region. We therefore identify potential for a local participatory monitoring network that also serve to overcome existing data gaps, which represent the main bottleneck for establishing an effective community‐based flood early‐warning system. We have applied a citizen science‐based hydrological monitoring approach in which we tested low‐cost river level sensors. Initial results, collected over summer 2017 from two stations on the River Karnali, suggest that our system can successfully be operated by non‐scientists, producing river level data that match those obtained from an adjacent government‐operated high‐tech radar sensor. We discuss potential opportunities to integrate these low‐cost sensors into existing hydrological monitoring practice. Combined with an adaptive, community‐led approach to resilience building, we argue that our low‐cost sensing technology has the potential not only to increase spatial network coverage in data‐scarce regions, but also to empower and educate local stakeholders to build flood resilience.
Karpouzoglou T, Dewulf A, Perez K, et al., 2020, From present to future development pathways in fragile mountain landscapes, ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE & POLICY, Vol: 114, Pages: 606-613, ISSN: 1462-9011
De Stercke S, Chaturvedi V, Buytaert W, et al., 2020, Water-energy nexus-based scenario analysis for sustainable development of Mumbai, Environmental Modelling and Software, Vol: 134, Pages: 1-17, ISSN: 1364-8152
The urban water-energy nexus sits at the intersection of the global phenomena of water scarcity, energy transitions and urbanisation. Research found that end use dominates the waterenergy nexus and that this component plays an important role in urban dynamics, but focussed on the Global North. We investigate the nexus of Mumbai and its long term resource demand. Our tool is a novel system dynamics model representing the urban water-energy nexus and takes into account characteristics such as intermittent water supply and the presence of slums. We devised scenarios around the Sustainable Development Goals and the Swachh Bharat Mission. The model shows that both can be achieved while saving on future water system infrastructure investments compared to business-as-usual. We find that also in Mumbai end use dominates the nexus. Representing end-use interactions increases expected water demand. This work indicates that globally, sustainable development of infrastructure must consider the urban water-energy nexus.
Correa A, Ochoa Tocachi B, Birkel C, et al., 2020, A concerted research effort to advance the hydrological understanding of tropical páramos, Hydrological Processes, Vol: 34, Pages: 4609-4627, ISSN: 0885-6087
Páramos, a neotropical alpine grassland‐peatland biome of the northern Andes and Central America, play an essential role in regional and global cycles of water, carbon, and nutrients. They act as water towers, delivering water and ecosystem services from the high mountains down to the Pacific, Caribbean, and Amazon regions. Páramos are also widely recognized as a biodiversity and climate change hot spots, yet they are threatened by anthropogenic activities and environmental changes. Despite their importance for water security and carbon storage, and their vulnerability to human activities, only three decades ago, páramos were severely understudied. Increasing awareness of the need for hydrological evidence to guide sustainable management of páramos prompted action for generating data and for filling long‐standing knowledge gaps. This has led to a remarkably successful increase in scientific knowledge, induced by a strong interaction between the scientific, policy, and (local) management communities. A combination of well‐established and innovative approaches has been applied to data collection, processing, and analysis. In this review, we provide a short overview of the historical development of research and state of knowledge of the hydrometeorology, flux dynamics, anthropogenic impacts, and the influence of extreme events in páramos. We then present emerging technologies for hydrology and water resources research and management applied to páramos. We discuss how converging science and policy efforts have leveraged traditional and new observational techniques to generate an evidence base that can support the sustainable management of páramos. We conclude that this co‐evolution of science and policy was able to successfully cover different spatial and temporal scales. Lastly, we outline future research directions to showcase how sustainable long‐term data collection can foster the responsible conservation of pá
Parajuli BP, Khadka P, Baskota P, et al., 2020, An Open Data and Citizen Science Approach to Building Resilience to Natural Hazards in a Data-Scarce Remote Mountainous Part of Nepal, SUSTAINABILITY, Vol: 12
Buytaert W, 2020, A very nice synthesis
Mao F, Khamis K, Clark J, et al., 2020, Moving beyond the technology: a socio-technical roadmap for low-cost water sensor network applications, Environmental Science and Technology (Washington), Vol: 54, Pages: 9145-9158, ISSN: 0013-936X
In this paper, we critically review the current state-of-the-art for sensor network applications and approaches that have developed in response to the recent rise of low-cost technologies. We specifically focus on water-related low-cost sensor networks, and conceptualize them as socio-technical systems that can address resource management challenges and opportunities at three scales of resolution: (1) technologies, (2) users and scenarios, and (3) society and communities. Building this argument, first we identify a general structure for building low-cost sensor networks by assembling technical components across configuration levels. Second, we identify four application categories, namely operational monitoring, scientific research, system optimization, and community development, each of which has different technical and nontechnical configurations that determine how, where, by whom, and for what purpose low-cost sensor networks are used. Third, we discuss the governance factors (e.g., stakeholders and users, networks sustainability and maintenance, application scenarios, and integrated design) and emerging technical opportunities that we argue need to be considered to maximize the added value and long-term societal impact of the next generation of sensor network applications. We conclude that consideration of the full range of socio-technical issues is essential to realize the full potential of sensor network technologies for society and the environment.
Cieslik K, Dewulf A, Buytaert W, 2020, Project Narratives: Investigating Participatory Conservation in the Peruvian Andes, DEVELOPMENT AND CHANGE, Vol: 51, Pages: 1067-1097, ISSN: 0012-155X
Ochoa-Tocachi B, Buytaert W, De Bièvre B, 2020, Participatory water resources monitoring as a science-policy tool: a decade of experience from the Andes, Publisher: Copernicus GmbH
Evidence-based decision making is seen as the key to sustainable water resource and catchment management. However, a major obstacle for evidence generation is the limited amount of data available from in-situ hydrometeorological monitoring. Monitoring is in decline globally, and this problem is particularly acute in high-elevation environments and in the tropics. Nevertheless, this situation also puts these environments in a promising position to study the potential of multi-source, polycentric generated information to tackle data scarcity.&lt;/p&gt;&lt;p&gt;Established in 2009, a bottom-up partnership of academic and non-governmental institutions pioneered participatory hydrological monitoring in the tropical Andes. Participatory approaches to environmental monitoring are becoming increasingly popular and are being promoted as a potential pathway to address long-standing data gaps. The partnership, known as the Regional Initiative for Hydrological Monitoring of Andean Ecosystems (iMHEA from its Spanish abbreviation) has instrumented a network of more than 30 headwater research catchments (&lt; 20 km2) covering four major biomes (p&amp;#225;ramo, jalca, puna, and forest) in nine locations of the tropical Andes. Precipitation and streamflow are monitored at high frequency with the involvement of local communities, governments, and research institutions. The network is designed to characterize the impacts of changes in land use and watershed interventions on catchment hydrological response and has started delivering fundamental information to guide processes of decision making more effectively and influencing policy-making on water resources at local and national scales.&lt;/p&gt;&lt;p&gt;Participatory water resources monitoring can be seen a science-policy tool. Here we present the drivers and context of the process that led to the creation of iMHEA, currently one of the largest initiativ
Buytaert W, Paul JD, Sah N, 2020, A technical evaluation of lidar-based measurement of river water levels, Water Resources Research, ISSN: 0043-1397
Grainger S, Ochoa-Tocachi BF, Antiporta J, et al., 2020, Tailoring infographics on water resources through iterative, user-centered design: A case study in the Peruvian Andes, Water Resources Research, Vol: 56, ISSN: 0043-1397
Effective communication and knowledge sharing across stakeholder groups (e.g., science, government, business, civil society, farmers, and the general public) are essential for more informed water resource management. Visualizations and graphics are powerful tools to engage diverse groups with unfamiliar information. Despite this potential, the design of visuals within applied science settings often does not involve end‐user interaction or explicit consideration of their existing knowledge systems, perspective, requirements, and context of use. As a result, products are often difficult for users to understand and contextualize. While user interaction and the development of tailored visualizations is increasingly promoted as a potential remedy, limited empirical evidence exists that shows the potential impact and can guide the development of specific approaches. We piloted an iterative and user‐centered design methodology toward the tailoring of infographic‐style posters in the context of Peruvian water governance. To test whether tailoring demonstrably improves the perceived effectiveness of products, we designed three products that conveyed similar information but were tailored to three different audiences (an Andean agricultural, urban professional, and urban general). We then compared the tailored posters to those tailored to other audiences by means of interviews and user grading. We found that end‐users perceive products that have undergone tailoring as more interesting, clearer, and more useful than products designed without explicit user consideration. Our findings indicate that identifying groups with shared characteristics and requirements is key for effective tailoring. Our research provides empirical evidence to support the incorporation of user‐centered design methods in water resource management contexts.
Ochoa-Tocachi BF, Buytaert W, 2020, Ancient water harvesting practices can help solve modern problems, The Science Breaker: Science Meets Society, Vol: 06
Straatsma M, Droogers P, Hunink J, et al., 2020, Global to regional scale evaluation of adaptation measures to reduce the future water gap, ENVIRONMENTAL MODELLING & SOFTWARE, Vol: 124, ISSN: 1364-8152
Docherty JM, Mao F, Buytaert W, et al., 2020, A framework for understanding water-related multi-hazards in a sustainable development context, PROGRESS IN PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY-EARTH AND ENVIRONMENT, Vol: 44, Pages: 267-284, ISSN: 0309-1333
Ochoa-Tocachi B, Paul J, Buytaert W, 2020, Inclusive hydrology: how to maximize participation and actionable knowledge creation in water resources, AGU 2019 Fall Meeting, Publisher: Wiley
This year marks the centennial of the American Geophysical Union advancing Earth and space science and 89 years of hydrologic science. The last 100 years have seen science and technology dancing a harmonious and progressively accelerated waltz. Hydroelectric power generation has made widespread electrification possible, while the rise of electronics and the advent of computers have enabled hydrologists to exploit increasingly complex models. Scientists and engineers have conquered space, and now satellite-based products and remotely sensed data have become indispensable inputs for hydrometeorological forecasting. Yet several important elements that have accompanied humanity’s history – nature, culture, and people – have been relegated; and it is only very recently, in the face of modern challenges, that they have attracted substantial attention. The advent of robust, cheap, and low-maintenance sensing equipment provides unprecedented opportunities for data collection, especially in a citizen science context. While citizens have been present throughout the history of scientific practice, developments in sensing technology, data processing and visualization, and the communication of ideas and results, are creating a wide range of new opportunities for public participation in scientific research. Integrating societal knowledge with hydrologic science, however, is not only a task for the 21st century. Historically, many civilizations have developed local water harvesting and management practices that cope with water stress by using ancient and nature-based knowledge. Indeed, indigenous peoples developed solutions that were inspired and supported by nature, and use, or mimic, natural processes to contribute to improved water management and to safeguard their water security. Technological development and knowledge integration also have a more fundamental impact on the way in which hydrologic knowledge advances, how it flows between different actors, how
Heal KV, Bartosova A, Hipsey MR, et al., 2020, Water quality: the missing dimension of water in the water-energy-food nexus, HYDROLOGICAL SCIENCES JOURNAL-JOURNAL DES SCIENCES HYDROLOGIQUES, Vol: 65, ISSN: 0262-6667
Stercke SD, Chaturvedi V, Buytaert W, et al., 2020, Water-energy nexus-based scenario analysis for sustainable development of Mumbai., Environ. Model. Softw., Vol: 134, Pages: 104854-104854
Yeguez M, Ablan M, Buytaert W, et al., 2019, Modelado hidrológico de un páramo andino venezolano con afloramientos rocosos usando TOPMODEL, MASKANA, Vol: 10, Pages: 54-63, ISSN: 1390-6143
Derin Y, Anagnostou E, Berne A, et al., 2019, Evaluation of GPM-era Global Satellite Precipitation Products over Multiple Complex Terrain Regions, REMOTE SENSING, Vol: 11
Alemie TC, Tilahun SA, Ochoa-Tocachi BF, et al., 2019, Predicting shallow groundwater tables for sloping highland aquifers, Water Resources Research, Vol: 55, Pages: 11088-11100, ISSN: 0043-1397
While hydrological science has made great strides forward during the last 50 years with the advance of computing power and availability of satellite images, much is unknown about the sustainable development of water for irrigation, domestic use, and livestock consumption for millions of households in the developing world. Specifically, quantification of shallow underground water resources for irrigation in highland regions remains challenging. The objective is to better understand the hydrology of highland watersheds with sloping hillside aquifers. Therefore, we present a subsurface flow model for hillside aquifers with recharge that varied from day to day. Recharge to the aquifer was estimated by the Thornthwaite Mather procedure. A characteristic time was identified for travel time of water flowing from the upper part of the hillside to the river or well. Using the method of characteristics, we found that the height of shallow groundwater level can be predicted by determining the total recharge over the characteristic time divided by drainable porosity. We apply the model to farmer‐dug wells in the Ethiopian highlands using observed rainfall, potential evaporation, and a fitted travel time. We find that the model performs well with maximum water table heights being determined by the soil surface and minimum heights by the presence or absence of volcanic dikes downhill. Our application shows that unless the water is ponded behind a natural or artificial barrier, hillslope aquifers are unable to provide a continuous source of water during the long, dry season. This clearly limits any irrigation development in the highlands from shallow sloping groundwater.
Cuesta F, Tovar C, Llambi LD, et al., 2019, Thermal niche traits of high alpine plant species and communities across the tropical Andes and their vulnerability to global warming, JOURNAL OF BIOGEOGRAPHY, Vol: 47, Pages: 408-420, ISSN: 0305-0270
Agrawal S, Chakraborty A, Karmakar N, et al., 2019, Effects of winter and summer-time irrigation over Gangetic Plain on the mean and intra-seasonal variability of Indian summer monsoon (correction to vol 53, pg 3147, 2019), Climate Dynamics, Vol: 53, Pages: 6519-6519, ISSN: 0930-7575
Dewulf A, Karpouzoglou T, Warner J, et al., 2019, The power to define resilience in social-hydrological systems: Toward a power-sensitive resilience framework, WILEY INTERDISCIPLINARY REVIEWS-WATER, Vol: 6, ISSN: 2049-1948
Agrawal S, Chakraborty A, Karmakar N, et al., 2019, Effects of winter and summer-time irrigation over Gangetic Plain on the mean and intra-seasonal variability of Indian summer monsoon, Climate Dynamics, Vol: 53, Pages: 3147-3166, ISSN: 0930-7575
The decreasing trend in rainfall in the last few decades over the Indo-Gangetic Plains of northern India as observed in ground-based observations puts increasing stress on groundwater because irrigation uses up to 70% of freshwater resources. In this work, we have analyzed the effects of extensive irrigation over the Gangetic Plains on the seasonal mean and intra-seasonal variability of the Indian summer monsoon, using a general circulation model and a very high-resolution soil moisture dataset created using extensive field observations in a state-of-the-art hydrological model. We find that the winter-time (November–March) irrigation has a positive feedback on the Indian summer monsoon through large scale circulation changes. These changes are analogous to a positive North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) phase during winter months. The effects of the positive NAO phase persist from winter to spring through widespread changes in surface conditions over western and central Asia, which makes the pre-monsoon conditions suitable for a subsequent good monsoon over India. Winter-time irrigation also resulted in a reduction of low frequency intra-seasonal variability over the Indian region during the monsoon season. However, when irrigation is practiced throughout the year, a decrease in June–September precipitation over the Gangetic Plains, significant at 95% level, is noted as compared to the no-irrigation scenario. This decrease is attributed to the increase in local soil moisture due to irrigation, which results in a southward shift of the moisture convergence zone during the active phase of monsoon, decreasing its mean and intraseasonal variability. Interestingly, these changes show a remarkable similarity to the long-term trend in observed rainfall spatial pattern and low-frequency variability. Our results suggest that with a decline in the mean summer precipitation and stressed groundwater resources in the Gangetic Plains, the water crisis could exacerbate, wi
Charani E, Cunnington AJ, Yousif AHA, et al., 2019, In transition: current health challenges and priorities in Sudan, BMJ Global Health, Vol: 4:e001723, ISSN: 2059-7908
A recent symposium and workshop in Khartoum, the capital of the Republic of Sudan, brought together broad expertise from three universities to address the current burden of communicable and non-communicable diseases facing the Sudanese healthcare system. These meetings identified common challenges that impact the burden of diseases in the country, most notably gaps in data and infrastructure which are essential to inform and deliver effective interventions. Non-communicable diseases, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, renal disease and cancer are increasing dramatically, contributing to multimorbidity. At the same time, progress against communicable diseases has been slow, and the burden of chronic and endemic infections remains considerable, with parasitic diseases (such as malaria, leishmaniasis and schistosomiasis) causing substantial morbidity and mortality. Antimicrobial resistance has become a major threat throughout the healthcare system, with an emerging impact on maternal, neonatal, and paediatric populations. Meanwhile, malnutrition, micronutrient deficiency, and poor perinatal outcomes remain common and contribute to a lifelong burden of disease. These challenges echo the UN sustainable development goals and concentrating on them in a unified strategy will be necessary to address the national burden of disease. At a time when the country is going through societal and political transition, we draw focus on the country and the need for resolution of its healthcare needs.
Bloeschl G, Bierkens MFP, Chambel A, et al., 2019, Twenty-three unsolved problems in hydrology (UPH) - a community perspective, HYDROLOGICAL SCIENCES JOURNAL-JOURNAL DES SCIENCES HYDROLOGIQUES, Vol: 64, Pages: 1141-1158, ISSN: 0262-6667
Regmi S, Bhusal J, Gurung P, et al., 2019, Learning to cope with water variability through participatory monitoring: the case study of the Mountainous region, Nepal, Meteorology Hydrology and Water Management, Vol: 7, Pages: 49-61, ISSN: 2299-3835
Participatory monitoring allows communities to understand the use and management of local water resources and at the same time develop a sense of ownership of environmental information. The data generated through participatory monitoring of stream flow and rainfall generate evidences to corroborate local people's experiences with changing water resources patterns. In this study we evaluate the potential of participatory monitoring of hydrological variables to improve scarce water supply utilization in agriculture. The case study site is the Mustang district in Nepal, which is located in the upper Kaligandaki river basin in the Himalayas with unique and complex geographical and climatic features. This region is characterized by a semi-arid climate with total annual precipitation of less than 300 mm. Water supply, agricultural land, and livestock grazing are the key ecosystem services that underpin livelihood security of the local population, particularly socio-economically vulnerable groups. An analysis of the measured stream flow data indicate that annual flow of water in the stream can meet the current crop irrigation water needs for the agricultural land of the research site. The data provide local farmers a new way of understanding local water needs. Participatory monitoring would contribute to an optimization of the use of ecosystem services to support economic development and livelihood improvement.
Ochoa-Tocachi BF, Bardales JD, Antiporta J, et al., 2019, Potential contributions of pre-Inca infiltration infrastructure to Andean water security, Nature Sustainability, Vol: 2, Pages: 584-593, ISSN: 2398-9629
Water resources worldwide are under severe stress from increasing climate variability and human pressures. In the tropical Andes, pre-Inca cultures developed nature-based water harvesting technologies to manage drought risks under natural climatic extremes. While these technologies have gained renewed attention as a potential strategy to increase water security, limited scientific evidence exists about their potential hydrological contributions at catchment scale. Here, we evaluate a 1,400-year-old indigenous infiltration enhancement system that diverts water from headwater streams onto mountain slopes during the wet season to enhance the yield and longevity of downslope natural springs. Infiltrated water is retained for an average of 45 d before resurfacing, confirming the system’s ability to contribute to dry-season flows. We estimate that upscaling the system to the source-water areas of the city of Lima can potentially delay 99 × 106 m3 yr−1 of streamflow and increase dry-season flows by 7.5% on average, which may provide a critical complement to conventional engineering solutions for water security.
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