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A graphical approach to characterize sub-daily flow regimes and evaluate its alterations due to hydropeaking
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.
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2017 (English)In: Science of the Total Environment, ISSN 0048-9697, E-ISSN 1879-1026, Vol. 574, p. 532-543Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Most flow regime characterizations focus on long time scale flow patterns, which are not precise enough to capture key components of short-term flow fluctuations. Recent proposed methods describing sub-daily flow fluctuations are focused on limited components of the flow regime being unable to fully represent it, or on the identification of peaking events based on subjectively defined thresholds, being unsuitable for evaluations of short-term flow regime alterations through comparisons between regulated and free-flowing rivers. This study aims to launch an innovative approach based on the visual display of quantitative information to address the challenge of the short-term hydrologic characterization and evaluation of alteration resulting from hydropeaking. We propose a graphical method to represent a discrete set of ecologically relevant indices that characterize and evaluate the alteration of sub-daily flow regimes. The frequency of occurrence of classified values of a descriptive hydrological variable is represented in a map-like graph where longitude, latitude and altitude represent the Julian day, the value of the variable and the frequency of occurrence, respectively. Subsequently, we tested the method on several rivers, both free-flowing and subjected to hydropower production. The advantages of our approach compared to other analytical methods are: (i) it displays a great amount of information without oversimplification; (ii) it takes into account changes in the intensity, timing and frequency of the sub-daily flows, without needing a priori defined thresholds to identify hydropeaking events; and (iii) it supports the Water Framework Directive goal. Specifically, results from applications of our graphical method agree with Sauterleute and Charmasson (2014) analytical method.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV , 2017. Vol. 574, p. 532-543
Keyword [en]
Hydropeaking, Graphical characterization, Short-term flow fluctuation, Ecohydraulics, Hydropower, Flow regulation
National Category
Ecology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-140089DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.09.087ISI: 000389090100052PubMedID: 27648531OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-140089DiVA, id: diva2:1145703
Available from: 2017-09-29 Created: 2017-09-29 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved

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Alonso, CarlosBejarano, Maria DoloresGarcia de Jalon, DiegoCarolli, Mauro

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