Water2014, 6(2), 414-433; doi:10.3390/w6020414 - published online 24 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: To move towards sustainable development, the mining industry needs to identify better mine water management practices for reducing raw water use, increasing water use efficiency, and eliminating environmental impacts in a precondition of securing mining production. However, the selection of optimal mine water management practices is technically challenging due to the lack of scientific tools to comprehensively evaluate management options against a set of conflicting criteria. This work has provided a solution to aid the identification of more sustainable mine water management practices. The solution includes a conceptual framework for forming a decision hierarchy; an evaluation method for assessing mine water management practices; and a sensitivity analysis in view of different preferences of stakeholders or managers. The solution is applied to a case study of the evaluation of sustainable water management practices in 16 mines located in the Bowen Basin in Queensland, Australia. The evaluation results illustrate the usefulness of the proposed solution. A sensitivity analysis is performed according to preference weights of stakeholders or managers. Some measures are provided for assessing sensitivity of strategy ranking outcomes if the weight of an indicator changes. Finally, some advice is given to improve the mine water management in some mines.
Water2014, 6(2), 399-413; doi:10.3390/w6020399 - published online 21 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Algal blooms have threatened the environmental functions of artificial seawater canals. Generally, water quality in a canal is managed by periodically circulating water from the sea into the canal. However, hydraulic characteristics from the canal design can interrupt the removal of algal blooms by water circulations in the canal. Accordingly, this study analyzed the effect of the hydraulic characteristics on algal blooms in an artificial seawater channel in Central Park, New Songdo City, Korea using a 3-D hydrodynamic model. Nutrients and velocity in stagnant areas in the canal were spatio-temporally measured. Algal bloom locations based on field monitoring mainly corresponded with areas of stagnant water and high vorticity in the z-direction, as determined by the numerical simulations. These results support that high vorticity interrupts the transfer water to the outer area when the canal water is in a stagnant condition. A high value of z-direction vorticity resulted in increased nutrient (total nitrogen (T-N) and total phosphorus (T-P)) availability, and sequentially increases the probability of algal bloom events. In this regard, this study will give a contribution to prevention of algal blooms in the artificial seawater canal.
Water2014, 6(2), 381-398; doi:10.3390/w6020381 - published online 18 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Every year, flood disasters are responsible for widespread destruction and loss of human life. Remote sensing data are capable of providing valuable, synoptic coverage of flood events but are not always available because of satellite revisit limitations, obstructions from cloud cover or vegetation canopy, or expense. In addition, knowledge of road accessibility is imperative during all phases of a flood event. In June 2013, the City of Calgary experienced sudden and extensive flooding but lacked comprehensive remote sensing coverage. Using this event as a case study, this work illustrates how data from non-authoritative sources are used to augment traditional data and methods to estimate flood extent and identify affected roads during a flood disaster. The application of these data, which may have varying resolutions and uncertainities, provide an estimation of flood extent when traditional data and methods are lacking or incomplete. When flooding occurs over multiple days, it is possible to construct an estimate of the advancement and recession of the flood event. Non-authoritative sources also provide flood information at the micro-level, which can be difficult to capture from remote sensing data; however, the distibution and quantity of data collected from these sources will affect the quality of the flood estimations.
Water2014, 6(2), 367-380; doi:10.3390/w6020367 - published online 13 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Smart firewater management and recycling helps reduce water use and protect the environment from pollution. However, contamination of recycled water may pose a health risk to fire fighters. This review assesses international literature to identify best practices, and to recommend new technologies and methods on firewater management and recycling. The literature assessment indicates that this is a new research area where insufficient findings have been published in Web of Science-referenced journals. Therefore, informally published materials (a.k.a. grey literature) were also assessed. Findings indicate the need for practical decision support tools to estimate consumption rates, predict “bottlenecks” and bund capacity, assess water quality and determine pump requirements. This article recommends that cost-efficient and rapid on-site treatment methods, such as compact and mobile filtration units for firewater recycling should be researched in the future. The filters should be based on compartments with different media. The empty pore space should decrease from inflow to outflow. A light plastic media should be positioned near the inflow to retain large particles, such as a grid. Activated carbon media could be placed near the outlet to remove fine suspended solids and dissolved contaminants. This should address concerns by fire fighters dealing with contaminated water, spray and foam.
Water2014, 6(2), 345-366; doi:10.3390/w6020345 - published online 5 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: To understand the characteristics of severe floods under global climate change, we created a design hyetograph for a 100-year return period. This incorporates a modified ranking method using the top 10 extreme rainfall events for present, near-future, and far-future periods. The rainfall data sets were projected with a general circulation model with high spatial and temporal resolution and used with a flood model to simulate the higher discharge peaks for the top 10 events of each term in a local watershed. The conventional-like ranking method, in which only a dimensionless shape is considered for the creation of a design hyetograph for a temporal distribution of rainfall, likely results in overestimates of discharge peaks because, even with a lower peak of rainfall intensity and a smaller amount of cumulative rainfall, the distribution shape is the only the factor for the design hyetograph. However, the modified ranking method, which considers amounts of cumulative rainfalls, provides a discharge peak from the design hyetograph less affected by a smaller cumulative rainfall depth for extreme rainfall. Furthermore, the effects of global climate change indicate that future discharge peaks will increase by up to three times of those of Present-term peaks, which may result in difficult flood control for the downstream river reaches.