River Conservation and Management
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This book is intended for those with an academic, scientific and practical interest in river conservation and management. It provides an overview of how changes in legislation, policies, institutional responsibilities, science, technology, practical techniques and public perception have influenced how rivers have been managed over the past 20 years and the challenges that lie ahead during the next 20 years.

The book is based on the international conference River Conservation and Management:20 Years On held at York. Thirty-one chapters, with contributions from North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australasia provide a wide-ranging perspective on this complex but profoundly important subject.


Following an introduction that chronicles the most important contextual changes, the book is organized into four broad topics:

  • Catchment management, ecosystem integrity and the threats to river ecosystems– this covers progress on  understanding and addressing the pressures affecting rivers, many of which will be amplified by climate change and increasing human demands for water;
  • Methods and approaches – illustrating some recent techniques that have been developed to assess condition and conservation status across  different types of river;
  • Recovery and rehabilitation – providing an insight into the principles, practice, public involvement and institutional networks that support and make improvements to modified river reaches;
  • Integrating nature conservation into wider river management –demonstrating the importance of integrated planning, involvement of local communities and the use of adaptive management in achieving multiple environmental and economic benefits along rivers used for different purposes.

The final chapter discusses the challenges faced in dealing with an uncertain future.

More than 1200 different references and numerous web-site citations provide the reader with an invaluable source of knowledge on the subject area.


Philip Boon and Paul Raven are the authors of River Conservation and Management, published by Wiley.


List of Contributors ix

Preface xiii

Acknowledgements xix


1 Revisiting the Case for River Conservation 3
Philip J. Boon

Catchment Conservation, Ecosystem Integrity and Threats to River Systems

2 From Channel to Catchment: A 20-Year Journey for River Management in England and Wales 17
Malcolm D. Newson

3 The Rivers and Streams of England and Wales: An Overview of their Physical Character in 2007–2008 and Changes Since 1995–1996 29
Katharine Seager, Lucy Baker, Helena Parsons, Paul J. Raven and Ian P. Vaughan

4 Environmental Flow Allocation as a Practical Aspect of IWRM 45
Jay O'Keeffe

5 Assessing the Hydrological Effects of Forest Plantations in Brazil 59
Walter de Paula Lima, Silvio Frosini de Barros Ferraz, Carolina Bozetti Rodrigues and Maureen Voigtlaender

6 In the Indus Delta it is No More the Mighty Indus 69
Muhammad Zafar Khan and Ghulam Akbar

7 A 20-Year View of Monitoring Ecological Quality in English and Welsh Rivers 79
Ian P. Vaughan and Stephen J. Ormerod

8 Water Quality and Exurbanization in Southern Appalachian Streams 91
Jackson R. Webster, Ernest F. Benfield, Kristen K. Cecala, John F. Chamblee, Carolyn A. Dehring, Ted Gragson, Jeffrey H. Cymerman, C. Rhett Jackson, Jennifer D. Knoepp, David S. Leigh, John C. Maerz, Catherine Pringle and H. Maurice Valett

9 Understanding and Managing Climate Change Effects on River Ecosystems 107
Stephen J. Ormerod and Isabelle Durance

10 Scotland's Freshwater Pearl Mussels: The Challenge of Climate Change 121
Peter Cosgrove, Lee Hastie, Jon Watt, Iain Sime and Philip J. Boon

Methods and Approaches

11 Can Mediterranean River Plants Translate into Quality Assessment Systems? Venturing into Unexplored Territories 135
Ian Dodkins, Francisca Aguiar and Maria Teresa Ferreira

12 The Use of Bryophytes for Fluvial Assessment of Mountain Streams in Portugal 143
Cristiana Vieira, Ana Seneca, Maria Teresa Ferreira and Cecilia Sergio

13 Improvements in Understanding the Contribution of Hyporheic Zones to Biodiversity and Ecological Functioning of UK Rivers 159
Paul J. Wood, David J. Gilvear, Nigel Willby, Anne L. Robertson, Terence Gledhill and Philip J. Boon

14 Taxonomic Distinctness as a Measure of Diversity of Stream Insects Exposed to Varying Salinity Levels in South-Eastern Australia 175
Richard Marchant and Ben Kefford

15 Development of a Systematic, Information-Based Approach to the Identification of High Value Sites for River Conservation in New Zealand 183
John Leathwick, David West, Atte Moilanen and Lindsay Chadderton

16 Assessing the Conservation Status of Alder-Ash Alluvial Forest and Atlantic Salmon in the Natura 2000 River Network of Cantabria, Northern Spain 193
Jose Barquin, Barbara Ondiviela, Maria Recio, Mario Alvarez-Cabria, Francisco J. Penas, Diego Fernandez, Laura Oti, Andres Garcia, Cesar Alvarez and Jose A. Juanes

17 The Use of Palaeoecological Techniques to Identify Reference Conditions for River Conservation Management 211
Emma L. Seddon, Paul J. Wood, Chris P. Mainstone, Malcolm T. Greenwood and Lynda C. Howard

Recovery and Rehabilitation

18 The Espace de Liberte and Restoration of Fluvial Process: When Can the River Restore Itself and When Must we Intervene? 225
G. Mathias Kondolf

19 Multi-Purpose, Interlinked and Without Barriers: The Emscher River Ecological Concept 243
Mechthild Semrau and Rudolf Hurck

20 Rehabilitation of the River Skerne and the River Cole, England: A Long-Term Public Perspective 249
E. Ulrika Aberg and Sue Tapsell

21 The Unnatural History of the River Trent: 50 Years of Ecological Recovery 261
Terry Langford, Tom Worthington, Peter Shaw, Paul Kemp, Chris Woolgar, Alastair Ferguson, Philip Harding and David Ottewell

22 Key Factors in the Management and Conservation of Temporary Mediterranean Streams: A Case Study of the Pardiela River, Southern Portugal 273
Joana Rosado, Manuela Morais, Antonio Serafim, Ana Pedro, Helena Silva, Miguel Potes, David Brito, Rui Salgado, Ramiro Neves, Ana Lillebø, Ant´onio Chambel, Vanda Pires, Carlos Pinto Gomes and Paulo Pinto

23 The History, Development, Role and Future of River Restoration Centres 285
Nigel T.H. Holmes and Martin Janes

Integrating Nature Conservation Within Wider River Management

24 From Stockholm to Rio II: The Natural and Institutional Landscapes Through Which Rivers Flow 297
Peter Bridgewater, Lei Guangchun and Lu Cai

25 What Have Rivers Ever Done For Us? Ecosystem Services and River Systems 313
Mark Everard

26 The Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Program: Progress and Immediate Challenges 325
John F. Hamill and Theodore S. Melis

27 An Individual-Based Model of Swan–Macrophyte Conflicts on a Chalk River 339
Kevin A. Wood, Richard A. Stillman, Francis Daunt and Matthew T. O'Hare

28 Integrating Habitat Conservation with Amenity and Recreational Uses Along an Urban Stretch of the Adige River, Northern Italy 345
Maria Giovanna Braioni, Maria Cristina Villani, Anna Braioni and Gianpaolo Salmoiraghi

29 A River in Crisis: The Lower River Murray, Australia 357
Anne E. Jensen and Keith F. Walker

30 The Nevis River: An Example of River Conservation in the New Zealand Context 371
Niall Watson

Dealing With an Uncertain Future

31 Current and Future Challenges in Managing Natural System Variability for River Conservation in European River Basins 383
Andrew R.G. Large

Index 403


“Overall, this book has successfully tackled this challenge head on and highlighted some key concepts. It will be interesting to see what the next 20 years will herald and whether or not rivers will be given a higher conservation value in terms of the part they play in providing overall ecosystem value.”  (Progress in Physical Geography, 4 April 2013)