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Water, Volume 13, Issue 6 (March-2 2021) – 137 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The presence of microplastics in food and beverages raises concern with regard to the potential health impacts. Thus, mitigation of microplastic entry into food and beverages is seen as a key step to minimizing the ingestion of microplastics by humans. Weisser et al. (2021) followed mineral water on its way from a ground water well into glass bottles and determined microplastic concentrations (≥11 µm) at each step of the bottling process using FTIR imaging and a Random Decision Forest Model. They successfully identified the bottle caps as the main source of microplastics in mineral water. View this paper
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Article
Analysis of the Impact of Land Use Changes on Soil Erosion Intensity and Sediment Yield Using the IntErO Model in the Talar Watershed of Iran
Water 2021, 13(6), 881; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060881 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1108
Abstract
Land use change is known as one of the main influencing factors on soil erosion and sediment production processes. The objective of the article is to study on how land use change impacts on soil erosion by using Intensity of Erosion and Outflow [...] Read more.
Land use change is known as one of the main influencing factors on soil erosion and sediment production processes. The objective of the article is to study on how land use change impacts on soil erosion by using Intensity of Erosion and Outflow (IntErO) as a process-oriented soil erosion model. The study has been conducted under land use changes within the period of 1991–2014 in the Talar watershed located in northern Iran. The GIS environment was used to prepare the required maps including Digital Elevation Model (DEM), geology, land use, soil, and drainage network. The climatology data including average annual precipitation and air temperature as well as the volume of torrential rain were extracted from the data of meteorological stations located inside and around the study watershed. The results indicates that, within the period of 1991–2014, the forest area decreased by 12,478.04 ha (6%), while the other land uses including rainfed agriculture, rangeland, irrigated agriculture, and residential area increased by 7248.25, 4481.05, 476.00, and 273.95 ha, respectively. The estimated outflow with 100 year return interval was 432.14 m3 s−1 in 1991, which increased to 446.91 m3 s−1 in 2014. It can be concluded that the probability of larger and/or more frequent floods waves in the Talar River is expected to increase. In addition, the amount of production of erosion material (gross erosion) in the watershed increased from 1,918,186 to 2,183,558 m3 yr−1, and the real soil losses per year (sediment yield) of the watershed increased from 440,482.4 to 501,421.3 m3 yr−1. The results clearly emphasized how the lack of appropriate land management and planning leads to increase the maximum flow discharge and sediment yield of the watershed. Full article
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Article
Risk Assessment of Coastal Flooding under Different Inundation Situations in Southwest of Taiwan (Tainan City)
Water 2021, 13(6), 880; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060880 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1418
Abstract
The Pacific island countries are particularly vulnerable to the effects of global warming including more frequent and intense natural disasters. Seawater inundation, one of the most serious disasters, could damage human property and life. Regional sea level rise, highest astronomic tide, vertical land [...] Read more.
The Pacific island countries are particularly vulnerable to the effects of global warming including more frequent and intense natural disasters. Seawater inundation, one of the most serious disasters, could damage human property and life. Regional sea level rise, highest astronomic tide, vertical land motions, and extreme sea level could result in episodic, recurrent, or permanent coastal inundation. Therefore, assessing potential flooding areas is a critical task for coastal management plans. In this study, a simulation of the static flooding situation in the southwest coast of Taiwan (Tainan city) at the end of this century was conducted by using a combination of the Taiwan Digital Elevation Model (DEM), regional sea level changes reconstructed by tide gauge and altimetry data, vertical land deformation derived from leveling and GPS data, and ocean tide models. In addition, the extreme sea level situation, which typically results from high water on a spring tide and a storm surge, was also evaluated by the joint probability method using tide gauge records. To analyze the possible static flood risk and avoid overestimation of inundation areas, a region-based image segmentation method was employed in the estimated future topographic data to generate the flood risk map. In addition, an extreme sea level situation, which typically results from high water on a spring tide and a storm surge, was also evaluated by the joint probability method using tide gauge records. Results showed that the range of inundation depth around the Tainan area is 0–8 m with a mean value of 4 m. In addition, most of the inundation areas are agricultural land use (60% of total inundation area of Tainan), and two important international wetlands, 88.5% of Zengwun Estuary Wetlands and 99.5% of Sihcao Wetlands (the important Black-faced Spoonbills Refuge) will disappear under the combined situation. The risk assessment of flooding areas is potentially useful for coastal ocean and land management to develop appropriate adaptation policies for preventing disasters resulting from global climate change. Full article
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Article
Intestinal Microbial Ecology and Fillet Metal Chemistry of Wild Grey Mullets Reflect the Variability of the Aquatic Environment in a Western Mediterranean Coastal Lagoon (Santa Giusta, Sardinia, Italy)
Water 2021, 13(6), 879; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060879 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 796
Abstract
Fish populations play an active role in the maintenance of aquatic ecosystems biodiversity. Their intestinal microbiota and fillet chemistry depend on abiotic and biotic factors of the water environments that they inhabit. The present study investigated the grey mullets’ gut microbiota from a [...] Read more.
Fish populations play an active role in the maintenance of aquatic ecosystems biodiversity. Their intestinal microbiota and fillet chemistry depend on abiotic and biotic factors of the water environments that they inhabit. The present study investigated the grey mullets’ gut microbiota from a transitional aquatic ecosystem (Santa Giusta Lagoon, Sardinia, Italy) by a multidisciplinary approach which refers the results of (1) gut cultivable microbiota analyses (MA), (2) the trace metal assessment of fish muscle (TM), (3) the physico-chemical water monitoring (PC). MA detected the greatest number of total aerobic heterotrophic bacteria, Enterobacteriaceae and coliforms in Autumn (mean values 1.3 × 105, 2.4 × 104, 1.1 × 104 cfu g−1, respectively) when the accumulated rain and mean values of nutrients (reactive phosphorous and silica) were the highest. Marine bacteria were more numerous in Summer (mean value 7.4 × 105 cfu g−1) when the highest mean values of water temperature and salinity were registered. The gut bacteria were identified as Pseudomonas spp. (64%), Aeromonas spp. (17%), Ochrobactrum pseudogrignonense (10%), Providencia spp. (5%), Enterobacter ludwigii (2%) and Kocuria tytonicola (2%). TM showed that Ca, Na, B and Ni increased their concentrations in Winter while maxima of P, Zn, Cu and Fe were found in muscles of fish sampled in Summer. This study highlighted that the fish intestinal microbiota and metal composition of the fillet reflected the seasonal aquatic environmental variability. Full article
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Article
Developing Pseudo Continuous Pedotransfer Functions for International Soils Measured with the Evaporation Method and the HYPROP System: II. The Soil Hydraulic Conductivity Curve
Water 2021, 13(6), 878; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060878 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1075
Abstract
Direct measurement of unsaturated hydraulic parameters is costly and time-consuming. Pedotransfer functions (PTFs) are typically developed to estimate soil hydraulic properties from readily available soil attributes. For the first time, in this study, we developed PTFs to estimate the soil hydraulic conductivity (log( [...] Read more.
Direct measurement of unsaturated hydraulic parameters is costly and time-consuming. Pedotransfer functions (PTFs) are typically developed to estimate soil hydraulic properties from readily available soil attributes. For the first time, in this study, we developed PTFs to estimate the soil hydraulic conductivity (log(K)) directly from measured data. We adopted the pseudo continuous neural network PTF (PCNN-PTF) approach and assessed its accuracy and reliability using two independent data sets with hydraulic conductivity measured via the evaporation method. The primary data set contained 150 international soils (6963 measured data pairs), and the second dataset consisted of 79 repacked Turkish soil samples (1340 measured data pairs). Four models with different combinations of the input attributes, including soil texture (sand, silt, clay), bulk density (BD), and organic matter content (SOM), were developed. The best performing international (root mean square error, RMSE = 0.520) and local (RMSE = 0.317) PTFs only had soil texture information as inputs when developed and tested using the same data set to estimate log(K). However, adding BD and SOM as input parameters increased the reliability of the international PCNN-PTFs when the Turkish data set was used as the test data set. We observed an overall improvement in the performance of PTFs with the increasing number of data points per soil textural class. The PCNN-PTFs consistently performed high across tension ranges when developed and tested using the international data set. Incorporating the Turkish data set into PTF development substantially improved the accuracy of the PTFs (on average close to 60% reduction in RMSE). Consequently, we recommend integrating local HYPROPTM (Hydraulic Property Analyzer, Meter Group Inc., USA) data sets into the international data set used in this study and retraining the PCNN-PTFs to enhance their performance for that specific region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soft Computing for Water and Aquatic Resource Management)
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Article
Forested Riparian Zones Provide Important Habitat for Fish in Urban Streams
Water 2021, 13(6), 877; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060877 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1496
Abstract
Riparian zones form a boundary between aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, with disproportionate influences on food web dynamics and ecosystem functioning in both habitats. However, riparian boundaries are frequently degraded by human activities, including urbanization, leading to direct impacts on terrestrial communities and indirect [...] Read more.
Riparian zones form a boundary between aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, with disproportionate influences on food web dynamics and ecosystem functioning in both habitats. However, riparian boundaries are frequently degraded by human activities, including urbanization, leading to direct impacts on terrestrial communities and indirect changes that are mediated through altered connectivity with adjacent aquatic ecosystems. We investigated how riparian habitat influences fish communities in an urban context. We electrofished nine urban site pairs with and without forested riparian buffers, alongside an additional 12 sites that were located throughout the river networks in the Oslo Fjord basin, Norway. Brown trout (Salmo trutta) were the dominant fish species. Riparian buffers had weak positive effects on fish densities at low to moderate levels of catchment urbanization, whereas fish were absent from highly polluted streams. Subtle shifts in fish size distributions suggested that riparian buffers play an important role in metapopulation dynamics. Stable isotopes in fish from buffered reaches indicated dietary shifts, pointing to the potential for a greater reliance on terrestrial-sourced carbon. Combining these results, we postulate that spatially-mediated ontogenetic diet shifts may be important for the persistence of brown trout in urban streams. Our results show that using a food web perspective is essential in understanding how riparian buffers can offset impacts in urban catchments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecosystem Functioning in Rivers and Riparian Zones)
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Article
Study on the Evaluation of (Heavy) Metals in Water and Sediment of Skadar Lake (Montenegro), with BCF Assessment and Translocation Ability (TA) by Trapa natans and a Review of SDGs
Water 2021, 13(6), 876; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060876 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 897
Abstract
Skadar Lake is a crypto-depression, a shallow lake, near to the Adriatic coast; the largest in the Balkan Peninsula and in southeastern Europe. The Lake is a very complex aquatic ecosystem in which anthropogenic activities have a long history in terms of the [...] Read more.
Skadar Lake is a crypto-depression, a shallow lake, near to the Adriatic coast; the largest in the Balkan Peninsula and in southeastern Europe. The Lake is a very complex aquatic ecosystem in which anthropogenic activities have a long history in terms of the impact on wildlife and the overexploitation of natural resources. Such consequences related to heavy metals represent a global problem. Heavy metal pollution can cause severe ecological consequences in aquatic ecosystems. These pollutants accumulate in the aquatic biota from water, sediment and through the food chain, the impact can magnify. Aquatic macrophytes are good indicators of the health of a water body. This research was carried out to evaluate heavy metals concentration in water, sediment and in the aquatic macrophyte Trapa natans (water chestnut), with BCF (bio-concentration factor), BSAF (biota sediment accumulation factor) and TA (translocation ability), in order to determine the water quality of this specific part of the aquatic ecosystem of Skadar Lake near to the settlement of Vranjina, a fishing village. The determination of heavy metals was carried out by ICP-OES. (Inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry). Statistical analysis was established by R statistical computing software, version 3.5.3. The metal concentration in the water decreases in the following sequential order: As > Pb > Zn > Cu = Al = Cr > Cd = Hg. Meanwhile in the sediment, the descending sequence is as follows: Cr > Zn > Cu > Pb > As > Cd > Hg. The ability of plants to absorb and accumulate metals from the aqueous growth medium was assessed using a bio-concentration factor. The BCF in the stem, leaf and fruit has high values, mainly, of Al, Cr, Cu and Zn, while for the biota sediment accumulation factor, the highest values were recorded for the following elements: Hg, Cd, Cu and Zn. Analysis of the translocation ability of TA shows the dominance of four metals: Pb, Cd, Hg and As. A significant positive Kendall’s correlation coefficient between sediment and stem (R = 0.73, p < 0.05), stem and leaf (R = 0.87, p < 0.05) and leaf and fruit (R = 1, p < 0.05) was established. Full article
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Article
Shoreline Solutions: Guiding Efficient Data Selection for Coastal Risk Modeling and the Design of Adaptation Interventions
Water 2021, 13(6), 875; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060875 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1321
Abstract
The Caribbean is affected by climate change due to an increase in the variability, frequency, and intensity of extreme weather events. When coupled with sea level rise (SLR), poor urban development design, and loss of habitats, severe flooding often impacts the coastal zone. [...] Read more.
The Caribbean is affected by climate change due to an increase in the variability, frequency, and intensity of extreme weather events. When coupled with sea level rise (SLR), poor urban development design, and loss of habitats, severe flooding often impacts the coastal zone. In order to protect citizens and adapt to a changing climate, national and local governments need to investigate their coastal vulnerability and climate change risks. To assess flood and inundation risk, some of the critical data are topography, bathymetry, and socio-economic. We review the datasets available for these parameters in Jamaica (and specifically Old Harbour Bay) and assess their pros and cons in terms of resolution and costs. We then examine how their use can affect the evaluation of the number of people and the value of infrastructure flooded in a typical sea level rise/flooding assessment. We find that there can be more than a three-fold difference in the estimate of people and property flooded under 3m SLR. We present an inventory of available environmental and economic datasets for modeling storm surge/SLR impacts and ecosystem-based coastal protection benefits at varying scales. We emphasize the importance of the careful selection of the appropriately scaled data for use in models that will inform climate adaptation planning, especially when considering sea level rise, in the coastal zone. Without a proper understanding of data needs and limitations, project developers and decision-makers overvalue investments in adaptation science which do not necessarily translate into effective adaptation implementation. Applying these datasets to estimate sea level rise and storm surge in an adaptation project in Jamaica, we found that less costly and lower resolution data and models provide up to three times lower coastal risk estimates than more expensive data and models, indicating that investments in better resolution digital elevation mapping (DEM) data are needed for targeted local-level decisions. However, we also identify that, with this general rule of thumb in mind, cost-effective, national data can be used by planners in the absence of high-resolution data to support adaptation action planning, possibly saving critical climate adaptation budgets for project implementation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Adaptation to Coastal Climate Change and Sea-Level Rise)
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Article
Assessment of the Impacts of Land Use Change on Non-Point Source Loading under Future Climate Scenarios Using the SWAT Model
Water 2021, 13(6), 874; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060874 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1173
Abstract
The Miyun Reservoir is an important source of surface drinking water in Beijing. Due to climate change and human activities, the inflow of Miyun Reservoir watershed (MRW) has been continuously reduced in the past 30 years, which has seriously affected the safety of [...] Read more.
The Miyun Reservoir is an important source of surface drinking water in Beijing. Due to climate change and human activities, the inflow of Miyun Reservoir watershed (MRW) has been continuously reduced in the past 30 years, which has seriously affected the safety of Beijing’s water supply. Therefore, this study aimed to assess the mitigation measures based on the quantification of the integrated impacts of climate and land use change in MRW. The non-point source (NPS) model (soil and water assessment tool, SWAT) was used for the development of future climate scenarios which were derived from two regional climate models (RCMs) under two representative concentration pathways (RCPs). Three land use scenarios were generated by the land use model (conversion of land-use and its effects (CLUE-S)): (1) historical trend scenario, (2) ecological protection without consideration of spatial configuration scenario and (3) ecological protection scenario. Moreover, the reduction of sediment and nutrients under three future land use patterns in future climate scenarios was evaluated. The results showed that an appropriate land use change project led to the desired reduction effect on sediment and nutrients output under future climate scenarios. The average reduction rates of sediment, total nitrogen and total phosphorus were 11.4%, 6.3% and 7.4%, respectively. The ecological protection scenario considering spatial configuration showed the best reduction effect on sediment, total nitrogen and total phosphorus. Therefore, the addition of region-specific preference variables as part of land use change provides better pollutant control effects. Overall, this research provides technical support to protect the safety of Beijing’s drinking water and future management of non-point source pollution in MRW. Full article
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Article
Evaluation of the WRF Model to Simulate a High-Intensity Rainfall Event over Kampala, Uganda
Water 2021, 13(6), 873; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060873 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1227
Abstract
Simulating high-intensity rainfall events that trigger local floods using a Numerical Weather Prediction model is challenging as rain-bearing systems are highly complex and localized. In this study, we analyze the performance of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model’s capability in simulating a [...] Read more.
Simulating high-intensity rainfall events that trigger local floods using a Numerical Weather Prediction model is challenging as rain-bearing systems are highly complex and localized. In this study, we analyze the performance of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model’s capability in simulating a high-intensity rainfall event using a variety of parameterization combinations over the Kampala catchment, Uganda. The study uses the high-intensity rainfall event that caused the local flood hazard on 25 June 2012 as a case study. The model capability to simulate the high-intensity rainfall event is performed for 24 simulations with a different combination of eight microphysics (MP), four cumulus (CP), and three planetary boundary layer (PBL) schemes. The model results are evaluated in terms of the total 24-h rainfall amount and its temporal and spatial distributions over the Kampala catchment using the Technique for Order of Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) analysis. Rainfall observations from two gauging stations and the CHIRPS satellite product served as benchmark. Based on the TOPSIS analysis, we find that the most successful combination consists of complex microphysics such as the Morrison 2-moment scheme combined with Grell-Freitas (GF) and ACM2 PBL with a good TOPSIS score. However, the WRF performance to simulate a high-intensity rainfall event that has triggered the local flood in parts of the catchment seems weak (i.e., 0.5, where the ideal score is 1). Although there is high spatial variability of the event with the high-intensity rainfall event triggering the localized floods simulated only in a few pockets of the catchment, it is remarkable to see that WRF is capable of producing this kind of event in the neighborhood of Kampala. This study confirms that the capability of the WRF model in producing high-intensity tropical rain events depends on the proper choice of parametrization combinations. Full article
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Article
SHETRAN and HEC HMS Model Evaluation for Runoff and Soil Moisture Simulation in the Jičinka River Catchment (Czech Republic)
Water 2021, 13(6), 872; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060872 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1135
Abstract
Due to the improvement of computation power, in recent decades considerable progress has been made in the development of complex hydrological models. On the other hand, simple conceptual models have also been advanced. Previous studies on rainfall–runoff models have shown that model performance [...] Read more.
Due to the improvement of computation power, in recent decades considerable progress has been made in the development of complex hydrological models. On the other hand, simple conceptual models have also been advanced. Previous studies on rainfall–runoff models have shown that model performance depends very much on the model structure. The purpose of this study is to determine whether the use of a complex hydrological model leads to more accurate results or not and to analyze whether some model structures are more efficient than others. Different configurations of the two models of different complexity, the Système Hydrologique Européen TRANsport (SHETRAN) and Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC-HMS), were compared and evaluated in simulating flash flood runoff for the small (75.9 km2) Jičinka River catchment in the Czech Republic. The two models were compared with respect to runoff simulations at the catchment outlet and soil moisture simulations within the catchment. The results indicate that the more complex SHETRAN model outperforms the simpler HEC HMS model in case of runoff, but not for soil moisture. It can be concluded that the models with higher complexity do not necessarily provide better model performance, and that the reliability of hydrological model simulations can vary depending on the hydrological variable under consideration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soil Science and Hydrology: Water at the Crossroad of Two Disciplines)
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Article
Natural and Anthropogenic Geochemical Tracers to Investigate Residence Times and Groundwater–Surface-Water Interactions in an Urban Alluvial Aquifer
Water 2021, 13(6), 871; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060871 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 979
Abstract
A multi-component geochemical dataset was collected from groundwater and surface-water bodies associated with the urban Fountain Creek alluvial aquifer, Colorado, USA, to facilitate analysis of recharge sources, geochemical interactions, and groundwater-residence times. Results indicate that groundwater can be separated into three distinct geochemical [...] Read more.
A multi-component geochemical dataset was collected from groundwater and surface-water bodies associated with the urban Fountain Creek alluvial aquifer, Colorado, USA, to facilitate analysis of recharge sources, geochemical interactions, and groundwater-residence times. Results indicate that groundwater can be separated into three distinct geochemical zones based on location within the flow system and proximity to surface water, and these zones can be used to infer sources of recharge and groundwater movement through the aquifer. Rare-earth-element concentrations and detections of wastewater-indicator compounds indicate the presence of effluent from wastewater-treatment plants in both groundwater and surface water. Effluent presence in groundwater indicates that streams in the area lose to groundwater in some seasons and are a source of focused groundwater recharge. Distributions of pharmaceuticals and wastewater-indicator compounds also inform an understanding of groundwater–surface-water interactions. Noble-gas isotopes corroborate rare-earth-element data in indicating geochemical evolution within the aquifer from recharge area to discharge area and qualitatively indicate variable groundwater-residence times and mixing with pre-modern groundwater. Quantitative groundwater-residence times calculated from 3H/3He, SF6, and lumped-parameter modeling generally are less than 20 years, but the presence of mixing with older groundwater of an unknown age is also indicated at selected locations. Future investigations would benefit by including groundwater-age tracers suited to quantification of mixing for both young (years to decades) and old (centuries and millennia) groundwater. This multi-faceted analysis facilitated development of a conceptual model for the investigated groundwater-flow system and illustrates the application of an encompassing suite of analytes in exploring hydrologic and geochemical interactions in complex systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Groundwater)
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Article
Actual Evapotranspiration Estimates in Arid Cold Regions Using Machine Learning Algorithms with In Situ and Remote Sensing Data
Water 2021, 13(6), 870; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060870 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 950
Abstract
Actual evapotranspiration (ETa) estimations in arid regions are challenging because this process is highly dynamic over time and space. Nevertheless, several studies have shown good results when implementing empirical regression formulae that, despite their simplicity, are comparable in accuracy to more [...] Read more.
Actual evapotranspiration (ETa) estimations in arid regions are challenging because this process is highly dynamic over time and space. Nevertheless, several studies have shown good results when implementing empirical regression formulae that, despite their simplicity, are comparable in accuracy to more complex models. Although many types of regression formulae to estimate ETa exist, there is no consensus on what variables must be included in the analysis. In this research, we used machine learning algorithms—through implementation of empirical linear regression formulae—to find the main variables that control daily and monthly ETa in arid cold regions, where there is a lack of available ETa data. Meteorological data alone and then combined with remote sensing vegetation indices (VIs) were used as input in ETa estimations. In situ ETa and meteorological data were obtained from ten sites in Chile, Australia, and the United States. Our results indicate that the available energy is the main meteorological variable that controls ETa in the assessed sites, despite the fact that these regions are typically described as water-limited environments. The VI that better represents the in situ ETa is the Normalized Difference Water Index, which represents water availability in plants and soils. The best performance of the regression equations in the validation sites was obtained for monthly estimates with the incorporation of VIs (R2 = 0.82), whereas the worst performance of these equations was obtained for monthly ETa estimates when only meteorological data were considered. Incorporation of remote-sensing information results in better ETa estimates compared to when only meteorological data are considered. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Evapotranspiration Measurements and Modeling)
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Article
Macroeconomic Accounting of Water Resources: An Input-Output Approach to Linkage Analysis and Impact Indicators Applied to the State of Ceará, Brazil
Water 2021, 13(6), 869; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060869 - 23 Mar 2021
Viewed by 738
Abstract
This work aims to identify the key sectors of the economic structure, considering their water flows, and estimate each sector’s impact. The goal is to highlight systemic characteristics in the regional economy, establish water use priorities, and assess water security. Based on a [...] Read more.
This work aims to identify the key sectors of the economic structure, considering their water flows, and estimate each sector’s impact. The goal is to highlight systemic characteristics in the regional economy, establish water use priorities, and assess water security. Based on a regional input-output matrix, we use the following methodologies: the Rasmussen and Hirschman indices for the ‘forward and backward linkages’; simple multipliers of production, job, and income; and the elasticity of water consumption to final water demand. Thirty-two economic sectors and household consumption are analysed. From the elasticity of final water demand, we find that both trade and household consumption put more pressure on water consumption. Furthermore, a joint analysis of the applied methodologies shows that: (a) the trade sector is more relevant for the linkage of water flows, (b) the agriculture sector has the highest direct water consumption, and (c) the public administration sector has the highest intermediate water consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Virtual Water Trade and Water Resources Economics)
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Article
Single and Competitive Adsorption Behaviors of Cu2+, Pb2+ and Zn2+ on the Biochar and Magnetic Biochar of Pomelo Peel in Aqueous Solution
Water 2021, 13(6), 868; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060868 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 820
Abstract
As an environment-friendly material, biochar has been used to remove heavy metals from wastewater, and the development of cost-effective biochar has been an emerging trend. However, limited studies consider the competitive adsorption of co-existing metals and the separation efficiency of absorbent and solution [...] Read more.
As an environment-friendly material, biochar has been used to remove heavy metals from wastewater, and the development of cost-effective biochar has been an emerging trend. However, limited studies consider the competitive adsorption of co-existing metals and the separation efficiency of absorbent and solution after adsorption. In this study, pomelo peel was used to prepare biochar (BC) and magnetic biochar (MBC) at different temperatures. Then, the physicochemical properties of the biochars were characterized and the adsorption characteristics of Cu2+, Pb2+, and Zn2+ on the biochars in single, binary, and ternary metal systems were investigated. The results showed that both pyrolysis temperature and magnetization could affect the adsorption capacity of biochar. The adsorption kinetic and thermodynamic processes could be well described by the pseudo-second-order kinetic model and Langmuir model. The adsorption isotherm types of Pb2+ and Zn2+ changed in the binary metal condition. The competitive adsorption order of three heavy metal ions in ternary metal adsorption was Pb2+ > Cu2+ > Zn2+. The MBC of 500 °C showed a good adsorption capacity to Pb2+ in the co-existing environment, and the maximum adsorption capacity was 48.74 mmol g−1. This study also provided technical support for the utilization of pomelo peel and the engineering application of biochar. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Wastewater Treatment and Reuse)
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Article
An Integrated Bottom-Up Approach for Leak Detection in Water Distribution Networks Based on Assessing Parameters of Water Balance Model
Water 2021, 13(6), 867; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060867 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 842
Abstract
Loss of water due to leakage is a common phenomenon observed practically in all water distribution networks (WDNs). However, the leakage volume can be reduced significantly if the occurrence of leakage is detected within minimal time after its occurrence. Based on the discriminative [...] Read more.
Loss of water due to leakage is a common phenomenon observed practically in all water distribution networks (WDNs). However, the leakage volume can be reduced significantly if the occurrence of leakage is detected within minimal time after its occurrence. Based on the discriminative behavior of different consumption in water balance, an integrated bottom-up water balance model is presented for leak detection in WDNs. The adaptive moment estimation (Adam) algorithm is employed to assess the parameters in the model. By analyzing the current value and the rising rate of the assessed parameters, abnormal events (e.g., leak, illegal use, or metering inaccuracy) could be detected. Furthermore, a one-step-slower strategy is proposed to estimate the weighted coefficient of pressure sensors to provide approximate location information of leak. The method was applied in a benchmark WDN and an experimental WDN to evaluate its performance. The results showed that relatively small leak could be detected in near-real-time. In addition, the method was able to identify the pressure sensors near to the leak. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Water Networks Modelling and Monitoring)
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Article
Detecting Climate Driven Changes in Chlorophyll-a in Deep Subalpine Lakes Using Long Term Satellite Data
Water 2021, 13(6), 866; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060866 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 895
Abstract
Climate change has increased the temperature and altered the mixing regime of high-value lakes in the subalpine region of Northern Italy. Remote sensing of chlorophyll-a can help provide a time series to allow an assessment of the ecological implications of this. Non-parametric multiplicative [...] Read more.
Climate change has increased the temperature and altered the mixing regime of high-value lakes in the subalpine region of Northern Italy. Remote sensing of chlorophyll-a can help provide a time series to allow an assessment of the ecological implications of this. Non-parametric multiplicative regression (NPMR) was used to visualize and understand the changes that have occurred between 2003–2018 in Lakes Garda, Como, Iseo, and Maggiore. In all four deep subalpine lakes, there has been a disruption from a traditional pattern of a significant spring chlorophyll-a peak followed by a clear water phase and summer/autumn peaks. This was replaced after 2010–2012, with lower spring peaks and a tendency for annual maxima to occur in summer. There was a tendency for this switch to be interspersed by a two-year period of low chlorophyll-a. Variables that were significant in NPMR included time, air temperature, total phosphorus, winter temperature, and winter values for the North Atlantic Oscillation. The change from spring to summer chlorophyll-a maxima, relatively sudden in an ecological context, could be interpreted as a regime shift. The cause was probably cascading effects from increased winter temperatures, reduced winter mixing, and altered nutrient dynamics. Future trends will depend on climate change and inter-decadal climate drivers. Full article
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Article
The Effect of the Effluent from a Small-Scale Conventional Wastewater Treatment Plant Treating Municipal Wastewater on the Composition and Abundance of the Microbial Community, Antibiotic Resistome, and Pathogens in the Sediment and Water of a Receiving Stream
Water 2021, 13(6), 865; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060865 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1387
Abstract
The effluents of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are major contributors of nutrients, microbes—including those carrying antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs)—and pathogens to receiving waterbodies. The effect of the effluent of a small-scale activated sludge WWTP treating municipal wastewater on the composition and abundance of [...] Read more.
The effluents of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are major contributors of nutrients, microbes—including those carrying antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs)—and pathogens to receiving waterbodies. The effect of the effluent of a small-scale activated sludge WWTP treating municipal wastewater on the composition and abundance of the microbial community as well as the antibiotic resistome and pathogens in the sediment and water of the receiving stream and river was studied using metagenome sequencing and a quantitative approach. Elevated Bacteroidetes proportions in the prokaryotic community, heightened sulfonamide and aminoglycoside resistance determinants proportions, and an increase of up to three orders of magnitude of sul1–sul2–aadA–blaOXA2 gene cluster abundances were recorded in stream water and sediments 0.3 km downstream of a WWTP discharge point. Further downstream, a gradual recovery of affected microbial communities along a distance gradient from WWTP was recorded, culminating in the mostly comparable state of river water and sediment parameters 3.7 km downstream of WWTP and stream water and sediments upstream of the WWTP discharge point. Archaea, especially Methanosarcina, Methanothrix, and Methanoregula, formed a substantial proportion of the microbial community of WWTP effluent as well as receiving stream water and sediment, and were linked to the spread of ARGs. Opportunistic environmental-origin pathogens were predominant in WWTP effluent and receiving stream bacterial communities, with Citrobacter freundii proportion being especially elevated in the close vicinity downstream of the WWTP discharge point. Full article
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Article
Spatial and Temporal Changes of Groundwater Storage in the Quaternary Aquifer, UAE
Water 2021, 13(6), 864; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060864 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1304
Abstract
To study the temporal and spatial variations of the groundwater quantity and quality in response to intensive groundwater exploitation from the Quaternary aquifer in UAE, a water budget model with a cell size of one km2 was developed. The available historical records [...] Read more.
To study the temporal and spatial variations of the groundwater quantity and quality in response to intensive groundwater exploitation from the Quaternary aquifer in UAE, a water budget model with a cell size of one km2 was developed. The available historical records of groundwater levels and salinity have been used to develop the water table and salinity maps of UAE for the years 1969, 2005, 2010, and 2015. The available water resources and soil information system was used to facilitate validity, cogency, and consistency of the groundwater analysis. The spatial analysis module of GIS was used to define the aquifer setting, saturated thickness, aquifer base elevation, effective porosity, and groundwater salinity at each grid cell. The obtained results indicated that the volume of fresh groundwater resources in the Quaternary aquifer in UAE has decreased from 238 km3 in 1969 to around 10 km3 in 2015. A major part of these depleted fresh groundwater resources was replaced by brackish water, and, therefore, the total groundwater storage in this aquifer has only decreased from 977 in 1969 to 922 km3 in 2015, respectively. If the same groundwater exploitation continues, the freshwater storage in the surficial aquifer might be totally depleted in agricultural areas. Most probably, the brackish groundwater resources will be exploited. In such areas, more attention should be devoted to the management of brackish water resources to avoid the exacerbation of the saltwater intrusion problem. Despite the fact that the obtained results indicate the negative impacts of the improper water resources management in a small part of the arid area, the learned lessons are valid for other arid countries, in particular, using the proper steady state boundary conditions for the initial conditions in modeling the available future management alternatives. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrogeochemistry in Coastal Aquifers)
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Article
Computing the Beta Parameter in IDW Interpolation by Using a Genetic Algorithm
Water 2021, 13(6), 863; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060863 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 862
Abstract
This article proposes a new approach for determining the optimal parameter (β) in the Inverse Distance Weighted Method (IDW) for spatial interpolation of hydrological data series. This is based on a genetic algorithm (GA) and finds a unique β for the entire study [...] Read more.
This article proposes a new approach for determining the optimal parameter (β) in the Inverse Distance Weighted Method (IDW) for spatial interpolation of hydrological data series. This is based on a genetic algorithm (GA) and finds a unique β for the entire study region, while the classical one determines different βs for different interpolated series. The algorithm is proposed in four scenarios crossover/mutation: single-point/uniform, single-point/swap, two-point/uniform, and two-point swap. Its performances are evaluated on data series collected for 41 years at ten observation sites, in terms of mean absolute error (MAE) and mean standard error (MSE). The smallest errors are obtained in the two-point swap scenario. Comparisons of the results with those of the ordinary kriging (KG), classical IDW (with β = 2 and the optimum beta found by our algorithm), and the Optimized IDW with Particle Swarm Optimization (OIDW) for each study data series show that the present approach better performs in 70% (80%) cases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Assessing Water Quality by Statistical Methods)
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Article
An Assessment of Groundwater Recharge at a Regional Scale for Sustainable Resource Management: Province of Alicante (SE Spain)
Water 2021, 13(6), 862; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060862 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 902
Abstract
For decades, the Province of Alicante, located in the Southeast of Spain, has experienced important economic development associated with groundwater exploitation. The scarcity of superficial resources and irregular distribution in the time and space of rainfall, typical of the Mediterranean environment, together with [...] Read more.
For decades, the Province of Alicante, located in the Southeast of Spain, has experienced important economic development associated with groundwater exploitation. The scarcity of superficial resources and irregular distribution in the time and space of rainfall, typical of the Mediterranean environment, together with the extensive limestone outcrops, have made groundwater a key resource for the area. However, insufficient knowledge about aquifers, especially the lack of precise recharge estimates, hinders regional water management. This study establishes updated recharge estimates and water budgets for the 200 aquifers found in Alicante, using readily usable methodologies and available data. These are soil water budget models, groundwater flow models, water table fluctuation methods, and spring flow analyses. The results show low mean annual values of recharge from precipitation (69 mm/year and a coefficient of 12%) and two main differentiated domains. The first one, in the northeast of the province, under more humid climatic conditions with larger carbonate aquifer systems, has higher recharge coefficients, ranging from 14% to 24%, and greater resources. For the rest of the province, where aquifers are smaller and annual averages of rainfall range between 250 and 400 mm, average recharge rates are low (9–12%). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Economics and Water Distribution Management)
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Article
Modelling Microplastics in the River Thames: Sources, Sinks and Policy Implications
Water 2021, 13(6), 861; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060861 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3209
Abstract
With widespread, long-term historical use of plastics and the presence of microplastics in a range of new and existing products, there is rising concern about their potential impacts on freshwater ecosystems. Understanding how microplastics are transported and distributed along river systems is key [...] Read more.
With widespread, long-term historical use of plastics and the presence of microplastics in a range of new and existing products, there is rising concern about their potential impacts on freshwater ecosystems. Understanding how microplastics are transported and distributed along river systems is key to assessing impacts. Modelling the main flow dynamics, mixing, sedimentation and resuspension processes is essential for an understanding of the transport processes. We use the new, processed based, dynamic, integrated catchments (INCA) microplastics model and apply this to the whole of the freshwater catchment of the River Thames, UK, to evaluate inputs, loads and concentrations along the river system. Recent data from UK water industry studies on microplastics in effluent discharges and sewage sludge disposal has been utilised to drive the INCA microplastics model. Predicted concentrations and microplastic loads moving along the river system are shown to be significant, with a build-up of concentrations along the river, with increasing deposition on the riverbed. The potential impacts on aquatic ecosystems are evaluated and a review of policy implications is explored. Full article
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Editorial
Technologies Developing in Heavy Metals’ Removal from Water
Water 2021, 13(6), 860; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060860 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 726
Abstract
Elevated concentrations of heavy metals in drinking water resources and industrial or urban wastewater pose a serious threat to human health and the equilibrium of ecosystems [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technologies Developing in Heavy Metals' Removal from Water)
Article
Regional Downscaling of Copernicus ERA5 Wave Data for Coastal Engineering Activities and Operational Coastal Services
Water 2021, 13(6), 859; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060859 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 765
Abstract
Hindcasted wind and wave data, available on a coarse resolution global grid (Copernicus ERA5 dataset), are downscaled by means of the numerical model SWAN (simulating waves in the nearshore) to produce time series of wave conditions at a high resolution along the Italian [...] Read more.
Hindcasted wind and wave data, available on a coarse resolution global grid (Copernicus ERA5 dataset), are downscaled by means of the numerical model SWAN (simulating waves in the nearshore) to produce time series of wave conditions at a high resolution along the Italian coasts in the central Tyrrhenian Sea. In order to achieve the proper spatial resolution along the coast, the finite element version of the model is used. Wave data time series at the ERA5 grid are used to specify boundary conditions for the wave model at the offshore sides of the computational domain. The wind field is fed to the model to account for local wave generation. The modeled sea states are compared against the multiple wave records available in the area, in order to calibrate and validate the model. The model results are in quite good agreement with direct measurements, both in terms of wave climate and wave extremes. The results show that using the present modeling chain, it is possible to build a reliable nearshore wave parameters database with high space resolution. Such a database, once prepared for coastal areas, possibly at the national level, can be of high value for many engineering activities related to coastal area management, and can be useful to provide fundamental information for the development of operational coastal services. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Coastal Sediment Management: From Theory to Practice)
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Article
Changes in Pelagic Fish Community Composition, Abundance, and Biomass along a Productivity Gradient in Subtropical Lakes
Water 2021, 13(6), 858; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060858 - 21 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1160
Abstract
How fish communities change with eutrophication in temperate lakes is well documented, while only a few studies are available from subtropical lakes. We investigate the fish community structure in 36 lakes located in the Yangtze River basin, covering a wide nutrient gradient. We [...] Read more.
How fish communities change with eutrophication in temperate lakes is well documented, while only a few studies are available from subtropical lakes. We investigate the fish community structure in 36 lakes located in the Yangtze River basin, covering a wide nutrient gradient. We found that fish species richness and total fish catch per unit effort (CPUE) increased significantly with chlorophyll a (Chla). Among the different feeding types, the proportion of zooplanktivores increased significantly with Chla, while the percentage of omnibenthivores showed no obvious changes; the CPUE of piscivorous Culter spp. increased with Chla, while their proportion of total catch decreased pronouncedly. Based on the index of relative importance (IRI), the most important and dominant fish species was the zooplanktivorous Sijiao (Toxabramis swinhonis), followed by the omniplanktivorous sharpbelly (Hemiculter leucisculus) and the omnibenthivorous crucian carp (Carassius carassius), a small-sized species belonging to the Cyprinidae family. The CPUE of these three species increased significantly with Chla. The focus has, so far, been directed at large fish, but as emphasized by our results, the abundant small fish species were dominant in our subtropical study lakes even in terms of biomass, and, accordingly, we recommend that more attention be paid to the population dynamics of these species in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Impacts of Human Activities and Climate Change on Freshwater Fish)
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Article
Water Quality and Hydrogeochemical Characteristics of Some Karst Water Sources in Apuseni Mountains, Romania
Water 2021, 13(6), 857; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060857 - 21 Mar 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1645
Abstract
Human activities and natural factors determine the hydrogeochemical characteristics of karst groundwaters and their use as drinking water. This study assesses the hydrogeochemical characteristics of 14 karst water sources in the Apuseni Mountains (NW Romania) and their potential use as drinking water sources. [...] Read more.
Human activities and natural factors determine the hydrogeochemical characteristics of karst groundwaters and their use as drinking water. This study assesses the hydrogeochemical characteristics of 14 karst water sources in the Apuseni Mountains (NW Romania) and their potential use as drinking water sources. As shown by the Durov and by the Piper diagrams, the chemical composition of the waters is typical of karst waters as it is dominated by HCO3 and Ca2+, having a circumneutral to alkaline pH and total dissolved solids ranging between 131 and 1092 mg L−1. The relation between the major ions revealed that dissolution is the main process contributing to the water chemistry. Limestone and dolostone are the main Ca and Mg sources, while halite is the main Na and Cl source. The Gibbs diagram confirmed the rock dominance of the water chemistry. The groundwater quality index (GWQI) showed that the waters are of excellent quality, except for two waters that displayed medium and good quality status. The quality of the studied karst waters is influenced by the geological characteristics, mainly by the water–rock interaction and, to a more limited extent, by anthropogenic activities. The investigated karst waters could be exploited as drinking water resources in the study area. The results of the present study highlight the importance of karst waters in the context of good-quality water shortage but also the vulnerability of this resource to anthropogenic influences. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research on Karst Eco-Hydrology and Sediment)
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Article
Study on Ecological Threshold of Groundwater in Typical Salinization Area of Qian’an County
Water 2021, 13(6), 856; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060856 - 20 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 987
Abstract
A suitable groundwater level is an important condition to maintain the stability of the vegetation community, especially in arid and semi-arid areas. The surface of Qian’an County in Western Jilin Province is often accompanied by salinization due to the influence of natural and [...] Read more.
A suitable groundwater level is an important condition to maintain the stability of the vegetation community, especially in arid and semi-arid areas. The surface of Qian’an County in Western Jilin Province is often accompanied by salinization due to the influence of natural and human factors. In order to maintain the healthy development of ecological vegetation and reduce the risk of soil salinization, the concept of an ecological threshold of groundwater level is proposed, and two methods are used to determine the reasonable ecological threshold of groundwater. (1) Based on field investigation and indoor experiment, the data layer of soil texture, land use type and groundwater mineralization degree in the research area was established by using remote sensing technology and GIS technology. According to the thickness of vegetation root layer and the height of capillary rise of different soil and water types, the influence of groundwater salinity is considered, and the sum of the two is taken as the ecological threshold of groundwater in the study area. The reasonable threshold value of suitable growth of various vegetation crops is 3.76~5.66 m. (2) According to the relationship between the normalized vegetation index (NDVI) and the groundwater buried depth and phreatic salt, the groundwater buried depth and the mineralization degree under the best vegetation cover are analyzed as follows: the buried depth of groundwater is between 4.8 m and 6.1 m, and the salinity of groundwater is between 0.37 and 1.25 g/L, which are reasonable groundwater properties in the study area of the ecological threshold. This result not only enriches and broadens the content of groundwater research, but also helps to predict the prospect of water resource development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
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Article
Accounting for Uncertainties in the Safety Assessment of Concrete Gravity Dams: A Probabilistic Approach with Sample Optimization
Water 2021, 13(6), 855; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060855 - 20 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1036
Abstract
Important advances have been made in the methodologies for assessing the safety of dams, resulting in the review and modification of design guidelines. Many existing dams fail to meet these revised criteria, and structural rehabilitation to achieve the updated standards may be costly [...] Read more.
Important advances have been made in the methodologies for assessing the safety of dams, resulting in the review and modification of design guidelines. Many existing dams fail to meet these revised criteria, and structural rehabilitation to achieve the updated standards may be costly and difficult. To this end, probabilistic methods have emerged as a promising alternative and constitute the basis of more adequate procedures of design and assessment. However, such methods, in addition to being computationally expensive, can produce very different solutions, depending on the input parameters, which can greatly influence the final results. Addressing the existing challenges of these procedures to analyze the stability of concrete dams, this study proposes a probabilistic-based methodology for assessing the safety of dams under usual, unusual, and extreme loading conditions. The proposed procedure allows the analysis to be updated while avoiding unnecessary simulation runs by classifying the load cases according to the annual probability of exceedance and by using an efficient progressive sampling strategy. In addition, a variance-based global sensitivity analysis is performed to identify the parameters most affecting the dam stability, and the parameter ranges that meet the safety guidelines are formulated. It is observed that the proposed methodology is more robust, more computationally efficient, and more easily interpretable than conventional methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soft Computing and Machine Learning in Dam Engineering)
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Editorial
Groundwater Modelling in Karst Areas
Water 2021, 13(6), 854; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060854 - 20 Mar 2021
Viewed by 887
Abstract
This Special Issue focuses on recent advances and future developments in the modeling (both conceptual and numerical) of flow and transport in karst aquifers [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Groundwater Modelling in Karst Areas)
Article
Water-Saving Soil Conservation Measures Should Be Used in Northern China: Evidence from Runoff Plot Data
Water 2021, 13(6), 853; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060853 - 20 Mar 2021
Viewed by 708
Abstract
Most of the current studies on soil conservation measures mainly focus on their soil control effect, neglecting their impact on water quantity. In the present study, the latest seven years (2014–2020) of monitored data from 22 runoff plots in the upstream catchment of [...] Read more.
Most of the current studies on soil conservation measures mainly focus on their soil control effect, neglecting their impact on water quantity. In the present study, the latest seven years (2014–2020) of monitored data from 22 runoff plots in the upstream catchment of the Miyun Reservoir, Beijing were used to evaluate the effects of slope, rainfall, and soil conservation measures on soil and water loss, and some implications were given in this water-scarce region. Excluding the impact of soil conservation measures, soil loss increased with the slope gradient and slope length. Runoff and soil loss were greatly affected by the rainfall amount and maximum 30-min rainfall intensity on the bare and cultivated slopes, or by rainfall amount and rainfall duration on almost all of the plots with soil conservation measures. The results indicated that the bare soil suffered the most severe soil loss, with a mean annual soil loss rate (SLR) of 4325 t km−2 year−1, followed by the cultivated lands without any measure, with an annual SLR of above 3205 t km−2 year−1. Contour tillage cannot effectively control soil loss on steep slopes. The vegetation measures and terrace, level bench, and fish scale pits, as well as their combinations, can decrease runoff by above 86% and decrease soil loss by 95%, respectively. Water-saving measures should be implemented in the study region. The measures, such as vegetation coverage, terracing, contour tillage, etc., should be carefully implemented on slopes. Bare and cultivated lands should further be implemented with soil conservation measures in this and similar regions in the world. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Hydrology)
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Article
Community Composition and Function of Bacteria in Activated Sludge of Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plants
Water 2021, 13(6), 852; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060852 - 20 Mar 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1065
Abstract
Municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) use functional microorganisms in activated sludge (AS) to reduce the environmental threat posed by wastewater. In this study, Illumina NovaSeq sequencing of 16S rRNA genes was performed to explore the microbial communities of AS at different stages of [...] Read more.
Municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) use functional microorganisms in activated sludge (AS) to reduce the environmental threat posed by wastewater. In this study, Illumina NovaSeq sequencing of 16S rRNA genes was performed to explore the microbial communities of AS at different stages of the two WWTP projects in Shenzhen, China. Results showed that Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Acidobacteria, Firmicutes, and Nitrospirae were the dominant phyla in all the samples, with Proteobacteria being the most abundant and reaching a maximum proportion of 59.63%. There was no significant difference in biodiversity between the two water plants, but Stage 1 and Stage 2 were significantly different. The Mantel test indicated that nitrate, total nitrogen (TN), chemical oxygen demand (COD), and nutrients were essential factors affecting the bacterial community structure. FAPROTAX analysis emphasized that the leading functional gene families include nitrification, aerobic nitrite oxidation, human pathogens, and phototrophy. This study reveals changes in the community structure of AS in different treatment units of Banxuegang WWTP, which can help engineers to optimize the wastewater treatment process. Full article
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