Science Gets Up to Speed on Dry Rivers: Nonperennial rivers are a major—and growing—part of the global river network. New research and science-based policies are needed to ensure the sustainability of these long-overlooked waterways.

Margaret Shanafield, Sarah Godsey, Thibault Datry, Rebecca Hale, Samuel C. Zipper, Katie Costigan, Corey A. Krabbenhoft, Walter K. Dodds, Margaret Zimmer, Daniel C. Allen, Michael Bogan, Kendra E. Kaiser, Ryan M. Burrows, John C. Hammond, Michelle Busch, Stephanie Kampf, Meryl C. Mims, Amy Burgin, Julian D. Olden

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Australia’s third-longest river, the Darling, normally experiences periods of medium to low flow, punctuated by flood events. But vast stretches of the river in New South Wales have been bone dry for the past two summers, and in 2019 the river was dry by early spring.

The lack of flows has left communities along its banks in dire straits, with many trucking in water to serve even basic domestic water requirements. Millions of dollars have been spent building pipelines to distant reservoirs, while groundwater resources have also been put under increased stress to fill gaps. River ecosystems have also felt the impacts acutely, with mass fish deaths being just one example.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-21
Number of pages3
JournalEos (United States)
Volume101
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2020

Keywords

  • Waterways
  • Sustainability
  • Policy

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