The WSU FEW seed and planning grant program is currently accepting proposals
There is a critical need to better understand the couplings of the Food-Energy-Water (FEW) nexus and how they determine system responses within and across resources domains. In recognizing this need, many institutions, including multiple federal agencies (e.g. NSF) and WSU, have committed to or are considering making FEW issues a top research priority in the coming years.
Sponsored by The Center for Environmental Research, Education and Outreach
Throughout history, humans have relied on rivers for a variety of uses including transportation, food, water for drinking and irrigation, renewable energy, and recreation. River channels also form the physical basis for riparian ecosystems with flow and sediment processes in the channel coevolving with flora and fauna. This process often leads to a state of dynamic equilibrium where the channel is essentially stable in form. Both anthropogenic activities and natural events may alter flow and sediment dynamics in the channel, disrupting this equilibrium. Disruptions may be due to direct or indirect impacts and often have significant environmental effects. Direct impacts occur within the channel and include channelization, instream structures, and gravel mining. Indirect impacts occur outside of the channel and alter the magnitude and timing of water and sediment delivery to streams. Examples of indirect impacts include changes in land use or climate. Hydraulic geometry, or regime equations, is a tool to relate hydrologic variables to channel form. While this concept is more than 50 years old, regional regime equations now form the basis of many stream restoration projects. This presentation revisits the concept of hydraulic geometry and investigates new applications. Using example data, it is demonstrated how hydraulic geometry clarifies the physics underlying fluvial processes as well as predicts generalized changes in channel form.
Dr. Petrie is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at WSU. His research focuses on rivers and sediment transport and the impact of hydropower operations on river morphology and ecology.
A long-standing challenge to Washington State University’s water rights was rejected Thursday, Feb. 12, by the state Supreme Court, with the majority writing that to rule otherwise would essentially punish the university for its efforts to conserve water (read more)
Restoring the natural habitat of American rivers and streams is a crucial multi-billion dollar effort. A large portion of that revenue is directed toward Washington State’s Columbia River Basin to aid in the recovery of vulnerable salmon and steelhead populations. Less understood is how well those projects actually improve the environment for a variety of aquatic species. » More ...
Seasonal blooms of cyanobacteria and other algae are common occurrences in lakes and may naturally increase in frequency as lakes become richer in nutrients and oxygen deprived, a process called eutrophication. However, increasing evidence shows that human activity is accelerating eutrophication and contributing to the increases in cyanobacteria blooms. » More ...