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Adaptation Strategies for Freshwater Ecosystems in the Pacific NW. 2009 WWF Science for Nature Symposium. Allison Aldous & Leslie Bach, The Nature Conservancy. photo © Rick McEwan. © Rick McEwan. © Laura Moran. © Rick McEwan. # GDEs 5 4 3 2 1.

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2009 WWF Science for Nature Symposium


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2009 wwf science for nature symposium

Adaptation Strategies for Freshwater Ecosystems in the Pacific NW

2009 WWF Science for Nature Symposium

Allison Aldous & Leslie Bach,

The Nature Conservancy

photo © Rick McEwan

slide8

Fish kills

National wildlife

refuge dewatering

Surface water eutrophication

Salmon fisheries closures

current solutions
Current solutions
  • Habitat restoration
    • wetlands
    • streams
    • riparian areas
  • Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement
    • Remove 4 dams
    • Retire some irrigation water rights
    • Reliable water allocation for agriculture
slide10

Salathé 2007

  • Not Always Practical
  • Availability of downscaled climate models
  • Availability of time series data
  • Expertise, resources
  • High level of uncertainty
    • GCMs
    • downscaling
    • hydrologic models
    • freshwater ecosystems responses

Hamlet et al. 2008

Tague et al. 2008

slide11

Snowmelt-dominated

Groundwater + snowmelt

Groundwater-dominated

slide12

Snowmelt dominated hydrology

total snowpack

Loss of

snowpack

Higher Temperatures

Rise in freezing elevation

High elevation

Mid-elevation

Courtesy T. Beechie

  • more winter rain
  • earlier snowmelt
  • more rain-on-snow events
  • earlier summer low flow
  • lower summer baseflow

Low elevation

groundwater dominated hydrology

less snowpack

+

earlier runoff

+

higher elevation snow zone

+

higher ET

=

less recharge

+

warmer recharge

+

less, warmer discharge

adapted from Vaccaro 2008.

Groundwater-dominated hydrology

mountain-front

floodplain / wetland

spatially

distributed

Winter et al. 1998

slide14

Winter precip ↑ 17%

baseflow ↓ 20%

Hydrograph shifts by 15 days

adaptation options for snowmelt dominated hydrology
Adaptation options for snowmelt-dominated hydrology
  • Factor changing water availability into settlement agreement
  • Land management in the snowpack zone
  • Increase water storage in ecosystems
    • wetland/riparian protection & restoration
    • reconnect channels with their floodplains

Temp

Loss of

snowpack

adaptation options for groundwater dependent ecosystems
Adaptation options for groundwater-dependent ecosystems
  • Factor changing water availability into settlement agreement
  • Land management in the snowpack zone
  • Wetland/riparian protection & restoration
  • Reconnect channels with their floodplains
  • Set environmental water requirements for groundwater

mountain-front

floodplain / wetland

spatially

distributed

Winter et al. 1998

how is this different
How is this different?
  • Anticipate future water availability
  • Emphasis on groundwater recharge
  • Emphasis on mid-elevation snowpack
  • Prioritize water storage in ecosystems