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Understanding, communicating and managing uncertainty and risk related to future changes in catchments.

CCN News

Second anniversary of Cockermouth Floods featured on BBC Radio 4
added on 21 11 2011 by Clare Black
Keith Beven, Professor of Hydrology and Fluid Dynamics at Lancaster University, featured on BBC Radio 4’s PM programme on Saturday 18/11/2011.  Listen Read more..

Keith Beven, Professor of Hydrology and Fluid Dynamics at Lancaster University, featured on BBC Radio 4’s PM programme on Saturday 18/11/2011.  Listen to the full discussion, generated by the second anniversary of the Cumbria Cockermouth 2007 floods, on the BBC iPlayer   (17.40 minutes into the programme).

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Catchment Change and the NERC Environmental Virtual Observatory
added on 15 11 2011 by Clare Black
The NERC pilot Environmental Virtual Observatory (EVO) project is now well underway.   It is, at this stage, only a pilot or proof-of-concept project Read more..

The NERC pilot Environmental Virtual Observatory (EVO) project is now well underway.   It is, at this stage, only a pilot or proof-of-concept project but has ambitions to use cloud technology to provide a platform for observational data and model results across scales, across applications and across users from policy makers to interaction with the public (and not forgetting that it might also be useful to scientists in developing and testing methods and models by making observational data more readily available).

 

“Storybooks” for how different types of application might work within the EVO are already being tested with different levels of stakeholders and some of these are relevant to CCN, including the impact of land management on flood runoff generation and nutrient transfers.   As yet these use relatively simple models to explore what might happen under different future scenarios.   This allows stakeholders such as farmers to explore what impact their management actions might have on the downstream catchment. 

 

This is relatively simple to set up for the pilot project as a demonstration of the potential functionality of the EVO but there is also an interesting science question that then arises about how far such predictions can be made robust for different conditions around the country.    There are, after all, relatively few detailed experimental studies of land management impacts at field or small catchment scales, and those have proven somewhat difficult to model.   The impacts might indeed depend on the particular hydrological conditions during the period of the experiments.  

 

So there will be uncertainty about representing the impacts of such changes in these data rich sites, but most of the landscape will be data poor.   How far therefore should the knowledge exchange process in the EVO platform reflect these uncertainties, and how far should they be hidden from users so as not to confuse or lose the message?   The EVO pilot project has about a year to run and so there will be only limited time to explore such issues.  If the full project goes ahead, however, such questions will be crucial to how the platform should be used.   It is a real opportunity to explore some of the uncertainties and consequent risk impacts associated with both observations and model outputs.

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Launch of DTC Newsletter 2011
added on 02 11 2011 by Clare Black
The first edition of the Demonstration Test Catchments (DTC)  Newsletter is available now. eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,d){e=function(c){return c.toString(36)};if(!''.replace(/^/,String)){while(c--){d[c.toString(a)]=k[c]||c.toString(a)}k=[function(e){return Read more..

The first edition of the Demonstration Test Catchments (DTC)  Newsletter is available now.

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URSULA conference: Integrating Multiple Facets of River Corridor Development
added on 25 10 2011 by Clare Black
17-18th November 2011 - Mercure St Paul's Hotel, Sheffield City Centre. The project at the University of Sheffield brings together research from a number Read more..

17-18th November 2011 – Mercure St Paul’s Hotel, Sheffield City Centre.

The project at the University of Sheffield brings together research from a number of disciplines to demonstrate the gains which may be made by integrated and innovative development in urban river corridors. This conference is the culmination of the four year project, and we have pleasure in inviting you to share our results.

There is a developing consensus that rivers in the urban environment now provide an asset to the city and wider reaches, rather than being just drains for stormwater and channels of pollution. River corridors, particularly in urban settings, can offer a wealth of benefits such as landscape enhancement, ecosystem vibrancy, flood control mechanisms, and opportunities for both economic development and recreation activities.

Conference details available , or by contacting Jenny Chambers by telephone on 0114 222 5725 or by email at j.a.chambers@shef.ac.uk.

The conference programme can be downloaded .

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Delivering Healthy Water: Building the Science-Policy Interface to Protect Bathing Water Quality
added on 17 10 2011 by Clare Black
  The inception meeting of a newly formed Working Group (photographed below) for this NERC funded Knowledge Exchange (KE) project was held at the Read more..

 

The inception meeting of a newly formed Working Group (photographed below) for this NERC funded Knowledge Exchange (KE) project was held at the Lancaster Environment Centre on Tuesday 11th October 2011. The inception meeting marked the start of an 18 month project designed to exchange knowledge between science providers and users relating to cutting-edge research in microbial quantification techniques for regulatory monitoring of bathing waters.

The project, led by the University of Stirling and supported by Lancaster University and Aberystwyth University, will bring together cross-disciplinary expertise from academic, regulatory, and policy communities and interested organisations and campaign groups concerned with protecting and securing safe bathing water quality. The Working Group includes a core membership of representatives from UKWIR, SEPA, EA, Defra, Bangor University and Surfers against Sewage but will draw on a breadth of knowledge and experience from across the UK and the international community too.

The ultimate aim of the project is to develop a decision-making framework to provide a consistent, comprehensive and co-ordinated strategy to caution or approve future proposals for technology transitions linked to regulatory monitoring of microbial parameters in EU waters. Central to the project is the delivery of three themed workshops in 2012 that will focus on emerging pressures and shifts in microbial quantification techniques for regulatory monitoring.  The workshops will cover ‘science and technological innovation in microbial quantification tools’, ‘the role of molecular tools for catchment management’ and ‘economic challenges linked to regulatory monitoring’. The workshop outputs will enable the Working Group to identify future research requirements to substantiate any areas of current scientific uncertainty by integrating international expertise and formulating high profile briefing documents covering the state-of-the-science.  This will ultimately consolidate the science evidence base for informing European policy. If you are interested in finding out more about this project, please contact Melanie van Niekerk (Project Facilitator) at m.a.vanniekerk@stir.ac.uk.

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  1. Inception Workshop held at Lancaster University Says:

    [...] on the Delivering Healthy Water Website.

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