Don't fight the site: Three geomorphic considerations in catchment-scale river rehabilitation planning

Gary Brierley*, Kirstie Fryirs

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Three geomorphic considerations that underpin the design and implementation of realistic and strategic river conservation and rehabilitation programs that work with the nature are outlined. First, the importance of appreciating the inherent diversity of river forms and processes is discussed. Second, river dynamics are appraised, framing the contemporary behavioral regime of a reach in relation to system evolution to explain changes to river character and behavior over time. Third, the trajectory of a reach is framed in relation to downstream patterns of river types, analyzing landscape connectivity at the catchment scale to interpret geomorphic river recovery potential. The application of these principles is demonstrated using extensive catchment-scale analyses of geomorphic river responses to human disturbance in the Bega and Upper Hunter catchments in southeastern Australia. Differing implications for reach- and catchment-scale rehabilitation planning prompt the imperative that management practices work with nature rather than strive to 'fight the site.'

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1201-1218
Number of pages18
JournalEnvironmental Management
Volume43
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2009

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