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UpstreamThinking
Spatial data and analysis in the improvement of aquatic
ecosystem health and downstream water quality
TheTamar Catchment
– 1,800km2 and 300,000+ people
It provide us with….
– food and materials
– energy / fuel
– drinking water
It regulates….
– climate gases
– flooding & dro...
Many pressures act to reduce ecosystem health
Contribution of pollution from diffuse sources in the catchment
Nutrients
• Phosphorus compounds
• Nitrates/Nitrites
• Amm...
Reduced ecosystem health impairs service provision
Heavily exploited ecosystem ‘Natural’ ecosystem
Provisioning services Regulating services Cultural services
Crops
Meat
Tim...
A participatory stakeholder-led approach…
 What services do we get?
 Are we getting enough?
 What areas effect provisio...
Ecosystem services: Water regulation & quality
The water cycle is one of the fundamental processes we all
depend on –
Wate...
Ecosystem services: Water regulation & purification
3
4
3
6 9
62
21
INHERENT RISK
PRACTICE
Source
Receptor
We want to unde...
Ecosystem services: Water regulation & purification
Seasonally wet gley
3
4
3
6 9
62
21
INHERENT RISK
PRACTICE
Identifying...
Natural habitat
Cultivated land
3
4
3
6 9
62
21
INHERENT RISK
PRACTICE
Permanent pasture
Ecosystem services: Water regulat...
Direct connection to watercourse
Steeply sloping
3
4
3
6 9
62
21
INHERENT RISK
PRACTICE
Hydrologically connected
Ecosystem...
Water Quality
 Soil hydrology & condition
• Run-off risk
• Leaching risk
 Topography (i.e. slope)
 Hydrological connect...
Case study: SouthWestWater’s Crownhill WTWs
For SWW: ↓ Water Supply + ↑ Pollution = ↑ Risk + ↑ Cost
Crownhill WTWs
60 Ml/day
80,000 households in
Plymouth & South Hams
3 raw water sources
- Burrator Reservoir
-Tamar at Gun...
Crownhill WTWs
60 Ml/day
80,000 households in
Plymouth & South Hams
3 raw water sources
- Burrator Reservoir
-Tamar at Gun...
SWW change the raw water sources for CrownhillWTWs
according to various pressures
Where is the ecosystem service derived?
…BUT
changing the source can
have a significant impact
on the treatment process
↑ RISK
↑ COSTS
Challenges at the water tre...
Challenges at the water treatment works
Increased treatment cost = ↑ Pumping + ↑ Purification
Using river sources increase...
Challenges at the water treatment works
Suspended sediment & turbidity
We need determine the scale of the problems and whe...
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Suspended sediment & turbidity
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Suspended sediment & turbidity
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Suspended sediment & turbidity
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Suspended sediment & turbidity
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Suspended sediment & turbidity
River walkover surveys
(APEM 2010)
Suspended sediment & turbidity
653 pollutions found….
Sources of pollution in the catch...
The sediment run-off risk model
helps us to quantify the scale of the
problem & target high risk areas
Challenges at the water treatment works (WTWs)
Nutrients: Phosphorus
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Nutrients: Phosphorus
Morse et al., (1993)
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Nutrients: Phosphorus
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Nutrients: Phosphorus
P
point
sources
PSYCHIC (ADAS, 2004)
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Nutrients: Phosphorus
P
livestock
sources
P
Total
PSYCHIC (ADAS, 2004)
Sources of pollution in the catchment
Nutrients: Phosphorus
Total P
A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution
Improving water quality – toolbox of measures
A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution
Improving water quality – toolbox of measures
Improving water quality – toolbox of measures
A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution
Improving water quality – toolbox of measures
A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution
*
Assessing the prospects for improvement
ECM+ for predicting phosphorus export
Scenario 2: 100% uptake of BFPs on Caudwor...
*
Scenario 2: 100% uptake of BFPs on Caudworthy
Scenario 1: Current situation
Scenario 3: 100% uptake of BFPs on entireTam...
It provide us with….
– food and materials
– energy / fuel
– drinking water
It regulates….
– climate gases
– flooding & dro...
Flooding Drought
Spaces for wildlifeCarbon sequestration
Land valueRecreational resources
Bringing it all together…
We now have a shared understanding of what outcomes will come from
a better catchment, who will benefit and importantly wh...
Ecosystem Sustainability Meter
Ecosystem Sustainability Meter
Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment
Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment
Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment
Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment
Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment
Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment
Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment
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Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment

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In this 1 hour lecture Dr Nick Paling, the Westcountry Rivers Trust's Head of Data, Evidence & Communications illustrates how the pressures degrading water quality in a catchment can be assessed and their sources determined. Once done, this allows a carefully tailored and targeted plan of action to be formed to reduce these impacts.

Published in: Environment
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Nick Paling Lecture on river catchment water quality assessment

  1. 1. UpstreamThinking Spatial data and analysis in the improvement of aquatic ecosystem health and downstream water quality
  2. 2. TheTamar Catchment – 1,800km2 and 300,000+ people
  3. 3. It provide us with…. – food and materials – energy / fuel – drinking water It regulates…. – climate gases – flooding & drought It also gives us areas for…. – culture – recreation – habitat for wildlife A catchment provides many Ecosystem Services
  4. 4. Many pressures act to reduce ecosystem health
  5. 5. Contribution of pollution from diffuse sources in the catchment Nutrients • Phosphorus compounds • Nitrates/Nitrites • Ammonia compounds Physico-chemistry • Dissolved oxygen • Colour • Turbidity / suspended solids • Smell & taste Microbiology • Faecal indicator organisms (FIO) • Other bacteria • Cryptosporidium spp. • Algae Pesticides • Acid herbicides • Neutral herbicides • Insecticides Many pressures act to reduce ecosystem health
  6. 6. Reduced ecosystem health impairs service provision
  7. 7. Heavily exploited ecosystem ‘Natural’ ecosystem Provisioning services Regulating services Cultural services Crops Meat Timber Spaces forWildlife Recreation Pest control Water regulation Water purification What services are we currently getting?
  8. 8. A participatory stakeholder-led approach…  What services do we get?  Are we getting enough?  What areas effect provision?  What can we do to  provision?  Where should they be targeted?  How is it funded?  What are the outcomes?  Are the new sources of funding? Developing a shared vision & a shared language - Habitat creation - Landuse change - Farm infrastructure - Best practice advice - Stewardship - Water Company - Biodiversity offsetting - Flood Risk - Research findings - Spatial data - Monitoring - Reports & plans
  9. 9. Ecosystem services: Water regulation & quality The water cycle is one of the fundamental processes we all depend on – Water regulation is dependent on -  Direction of water movement: laterally or vertically  Rate of water movement / timing of release  Interactions with contaminants Some land areas play a  role in water regulation and water quality - Innate characteristics - Condition/health
  10. 10. Ecosystem services: Water regulation & purification 3 4 3 6 9 62 21 INHERENT RISK PRACTICE Source Receptor We want to understand why water quality is (or is not) degraded in certain locations… +++ Importance/opportunity
  11. 11. Ecosystem services: Water regulation & purification Seasonally wet gley 3 4 3 6 9 62 21 INHERENT RISK PRACTICE Identifying areas of high importance/risk to water regulation - Soil type & condition/practices Free-draining brown earth Gley with impeded drainage
  12. 12. Natural habitat Cultivated land 3 4 3 6 9 62 21 INHERENT RISK PRACTICE Permanent pasture Ecosystem services: Water regulation & purification Identifying areas of high importance/risk to water regulation - Landuse & practice (intensity of use)
  13. 13. Direct connection to watercourse Steeply sloping 3 4 3 6 9 62 21 INHERENT RISK PRACTICE Hydrologically connected Ecosystem services: Water regulation & purification Identifying areas of high importance/risk to water regulation - Location, topography & hydrological connectivity
  14. 14. Water Quality  Soil hydrology & condition • Run-off risk • Leaching risk  Topography (i.e. slope)  Hydrological connectivity • Proximity to watercourse • Flood plain • Surface & sub-surface flow accumulation  Land cover • Natural habitats (wetland, woodland or peatland) • Farmed land (tillage or permanent grass) The group identified land most likely to have an impact on water quality:
  15. 15. Case study: SouthWestWater’s Crownhill WTWs For SWW: ↓ Water Supply + ↑ Pollution = ↑ Risk + ↑ Cost
  16. 16. Crownhill WTWs 60 Ml/day 80,000 households in Plymouth & South Hams 3 raw water sources - Burrator Reservoir -Tamar at Gunnislake -Tavy at Lopwell Dam
  17. 17. Crownhill WTWs 60 Ml/day 80,000 households in Plymouth & South Hams 3 raw water sources - Burrator Reservoir -Tamar at Gunnislake -Tavy at Lopwell Dam
  18. 18. SWW change the raw water sources for CrownhillWTWs according to various pressures Where is the ecosystem service derived?
  19. 19. …BUT changing the source can have a significant impact on the treatment process ↑ RISK ↑ COSTS Challenges at the water treatment works
  20. 20. Challenges at the water treatment works Increased treatment cost = ↑ Pumping + ↑ Purification Using river sources increases the cost of treatment
  21. 21. Challenges at the water treatment works Suspended sediment & turbidity We need determine the scale of the problems and where they are derived from in the catchment… …if we don’t know this, how can we possibly estimate the potential for enhanced ecosystem service (clean raw water) delivery…?
  22. 22. Sources of pollution in the catchment Suspended sediment & turbidity
  23. 23. Sources of pollution in the catchment Suspended sediment & turbidity
  24. 24. Sources of pollution in the catchment Suspended sediment & turbidity
  25. 25. Sources of pollution in the catchment Suspended sediment & turbidity
  26. 26. Sources of pollution in the catchment Suspended sediment & turbidity
  27. 27. River walkover surveys (APEM 2010) Suspended sediment & turbidity 653 pollutions found…. Sources of pollution in the catchment
  28. 28. The sediment run-off risk model helps us to quantify the scale of the problem & target high risk areas
  29. 29. Challenges at the water treatment works (WTWs) Nutrients: Phosphorus
  30. 30. Sources of pollution in the catchment Nutrients: Phosphorus Morse et al., (1993)
  31. 31. Sources of pollution in the catchment Nutrients: Phosphorus
  32. 32. Sources of pollution in the catchment Nutrients: Phosphorus P point sources PSYCHIC (ADAS, 2004)
  33. 33. Sources of pollution in the catchment Nutrients: Phosphorus P livestock sources P Total PSYCHIC (ADAS, 2004)
  34. 34. Sources of pollution in the catchment Nutrients: Phosphorus Total P
  35. 35. A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution Improving water quality – toolbox of measures
  36. 36. A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution Improving water quality – toolbox of measures
  37. 37. Improving water quality – toolbox of measures A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution
  38. 38. Improving water quality – toolbox of measures A well established toolbox of measures to reduce rural diffuse pollution
  39. 39. * Assessing the prospects for improvement ECM+ for predicting phosphorus export Scenario 2: 100% uptake of BFPs on Caudworthy Scenario 1: Current situation
  40. 40. * Scenario 2: 100% uptake of BFPs on Caudworthy Scenario 1: Current situation Scenario 3: 100% uptake of BFPs on entireTamar Assessing the prospects for improvement ECM+ for predicting phosphorus export
  41. 41. It provide us with…. – food and materials – energy / fuel – drinking water It regulates…. – climate gases – flooding & drought It also gives us areas for…. – culture – recreation – habitat for wildlife A catchment provides many Ecosystem Services
  42. 42. Flooding Drought
  43. 43. Spaces for wildlifeCarbon sequestration
  44. 44. Land valueRecreational resources
  45. 45. Bringing it all together…
  46. 46. We now have a shared understanding of what outcomes will come from a better catchment, who will benefit and importantly who might pay…
  47. 47. Ecosystem Sustainability Meter
  48. 48. Ecosystem Sustainability Meter

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