Project Number: 6218-13000-011-09
Start Date: Oct 01, 2013
End Date: Dec 31, 2016
Biophysical Research: The research approaches include rapid geomorphic assessment, channel cross-sections throughout the watershed, including bank height, bank layering, channel slope, bank slope, bankfull height/depth, and sinuosity, characterization of the riparian corridor and vegetation establishment, installation of water level loggers for stage recording, analysis of soil bulk density and particle size analysis, and use of JETs and BSTs to characterize streambank erosion/failure resistance. Following major storm events, we will collect repeat cross-section data to quantify changes in the stream transects. Using GIS, we will quantify bank migration from NAIP aerial photographs. We will parameterize and validate the CONCEPTS model by setting up detailed cross-sections in the model at each of the characterized stream transects. Upland inflow and sediment loads into the channel will be simulated using the SWAT model. We will perform CONCEPTs model simulations of various conservation/management practices for in-stream, streambank, and riparian practices utilizing different implementation strategies across a range of future climate scenarios and provide information from the model simulations on long-term cost-effective stabilization project strategies and locations. Economic and Social Research: To determine individuals' preferences, a best-worst methodology will be applied, also called maximum difference scaling. Each group will be given the potential improvements in ecosystem, turbidity, decreased sedimentation, riverbank land lost, and other parameters and asked to choose the best and worst. Over a series of choice sets, this gives a relative ranking of the outcomes of the engineering project without dollar values. This will be fed into a cost minimization linear program and used to weigh the outcomes for targeting practices. A second objective will analyze whether individuals on the riparian corridor have already adopted practices and what their characteristics are, such that future or better practices could be targeted to them as early adopters or to identify barriers to adoption. This naturally dovetails into the extension program and will be provided to agencies to inform them on preferences of target audiences. Extension: Fact sheets and online videos regarding in stream and riparian corridor controls and management will be distributed via the internet and could be utilized in the future by area extension agents. Based on results from the research component relative to characterizing the channel, we will demonstrate cost-effective techniques for RGAs for regulators, natural resources managers, academics, extension educators, and other interested stakeholders. For workshops, a paired blind before and after assessment will be performed to evaluate learning.