Sustainable water management under future uncertainty with eco-engineering decision scaling

N. Leroy Poff, Casey M. Brown, Theodore E. Grantham, John H. Matthews, Margaret A. Palmer, Caitlin M. Spence, Robert L. Wilby, Marjolijn Haasnoot, Guillermo F. Mendoza, Kathleen C. Dominique, Andres Baeza-Castro

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

138 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Managing freshwater resources sustainably under future climatic and hydrological uncertainty poses novel challenges. Rehabilitation of ageing infrastructure and construction of new dams are widely viewed as solutions to diminish climate risk, but attaining the broad goal of freshwater sustainability will require expansion of the prevailing water resources management paradigm beyond narrow economic criteria to include socially valued ecosystem functions and services. We introduce a new decision framework, eco-engineering decision scaling (EEDS), that explicitly and quantitatively explores trade-offs in stakeholder-defined engineering and ecological performance metrics across a range of possible management actions under unknown future hydrological and climate states. We illustrate its potential application through a hypothetical case study of the Iowa River, USA. EEDS holds promise as a powerful framework for operationalizing freshwater sustainability under future hydrological uncertainty by fostering collaboration across historically conflicting perspectives of water resource engineering and river conservation ecology to design and operate water infrastructure for social and environmental benefits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-34
Number of pages10
JournalNature Climate Change
Volume6
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

scaling
water management
uncertainty
engineering
water
river
sustainability
infrastructure
climate
resources
ecosystem function
management
ecosystem service
rehabilitation
ecology
stakeholder
conservation
dam
water resource
paradigm

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Poff, N. L., Brown, C. M., Grantham, T. E., Matthews, J. H., Palmer, M. A., Spence, C. M., ... Baeza-Castro, A. (2016). Sustainable water management under future uncertainty with eco-engineering decision scaling. Nature Climate Change, 6(1), 25-34. https://doi.org/10.1038/nclimate2765

Sustainable water management under future uncertainty with eco-engineering decision scaling. / Poff, N. Leroy; Brown, Casey M.; Grantham, Theodore E.; Matthews, John H.; Palmer, Margaret A.; Spence, Caitlin M.; Wilby, Robert L.; Haasnoot, Marjolijn; Mendoza, Guillermo F.; Dominique, Kathleen C.; Baeza-Castro, Andres.

In: Nature Climate Change, Vol. 6, No. 1, 01.01.2016, p. 25-34.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Poff, NL, Brown, CM, Grantham, TE, Matthews, JH, Palmer, MA, Spence, CM, Wilby, RL, Haasnoot, M, Mendoza, GF, Dominique, KC & Baeza-Castro, A 2016, 'Sustainable water management under future uncertainty with eco-engineering decision scaling', Nature Climate Change, vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 25-34. https://doi.org/10.1038/nclimate2765
Poff NL, Brown CM, Grantham TE, Matthews JH, Palmer MA, Spence CM et al. Sustainable water management under future uncertainty with eco-engineering decision scaling. Nature Climate Change. 2016 Jan 1;6(1):25-34. https://doi.org/10.1038/nclimate2765
Poff, N. Leroy ; Brown, Casey M. ; Grantham, Theodore E. ; Matthews, John H. ; Palmer, Margaret A. ; Spence, Caitlin M. ; Wilby, Robert L. ; Haasnoot, Marjolijn ; Mendoza, Guillermo F. ; Dominique, Kathleen C. ; Baeza-Castro, Andres. / Sustainable water management under future uncertainty with eco-engineering decision scaling. In: Nature Climate Change. 2016 ; Vol. 6, No. 1. pp. 25-34.
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