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Abstract: Session E  2:20 pm (Back to Session F)
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Reading Sediment: Using Rapid Geomorphology and Sediment Budget Tools to Guide Water Intake Maintenance and Replacement

Ian Jewell, J.D.
Freese and Nichols, Inc.
Greensboro NC

Author: Ian Jewell, J.D.

Water intakes and other water supply infrastructure are frequently located in riverine, lacustrine or other water environments in which sediment deposition can create issues for optimal performance of the structure.  The routine dredging of sediment around these structures can be a costly expense for municipalities and local governments.  If a decision must be made whether to move the intake after its current location has silted-in or if a new location is being considered, a sediment supply and transport analysis can help inform the optimal location to minimize future sediment removal costs. While desktop studies using numerical models are a common approach to studying this issue, such studies can be costly and time-consuming.  A case-study is presented using a rapid, cost-effective sediment analysis approach to help predict future sediment deposition around a municipal water intake structure in the mountains of Virginia.  The assessment approach, based on elements taken from the EPA’s Watershed Assessment of River Stability and Sediment Supply (WARSSS), used basic assumptions informed by field verification of geomorphology, streambank erosion and upstream land use coupled with simple sediment transport and supply models. I will present the summary of the advantages of the approach, in terms of cost and time, along with recommendations for application in different types of sediment environments.