This is the second IWRA seminar on engineered rivers in arid lands. Last September we reviewed current and emerging problems faced by the ten rivers from six continents that we included in the SERIDAS project: loss of reservoir volume due to sedimentation, reduced water supply due to climate change and climate variation, use of inefficient irrigation techniques, broken distribution systems and declining environmental flows. All of this reduces/threatens food production, urban water supply and protection of the environment.
This time we focus on response strategies: how should the managers and users of SERIDAS rivers respond to reduced water supply and still maintain or restore river sustainability? We discuss several options, such as increased stakeholder participation and carefully planned interbasin water transfers. We illustrate recommended policy responses for two rivers. As a general rule, we recommend that the managers carefully determine the river’s dependable yield even under drought conditions. They should then use dependable yield for water allocations to users and make this the starting point for defining river sustainability.
On the day of this webinar Cambridge University Press will publish a book on the SERIDAS project. It includes case studies of the ten rivers studied, analysis of the challenges they face and policy responses the authors recommend: Sustainability of Engineered Rivers in Arid Lands: Challenge and Response, edited by Jurgen Schmandt and Aysegül Kibaraglu.
The webinar will discuss the ways that river managers should use the projected dependable yield to redefine sustainability of their river and develop, implement and regularly review basin and sub-basin sustainability plans and will feature time for audience engagement and questions.