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Tools in Fluvial Geomorphology, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-0-470-68405-4
584 pages
June 2016, Wiley-Blackwell
Tools in Fluvial Geomorphology, 2nd Edition (0470684054) cover image


Fluvial Geomorphology studies the biophysical processes acting in rivers, and the sediment patterns and landforms resulting from them. It is a discipline of synthesis, with roots in geology, geography, and river engineering, and with strong interactions with allied fields such as ecology, engineering and landscape architecture.  This book comprehensively reviews tools used in fluvial geomorphology, at a level suitable to guide the selection of research methods for a given question. Presenting an integrated approach to the interdisciplinary nature of the subject, it provides guidance for researchers and professionals on the tools available to answer questions on river restoration and management.  

Thoroughly updated since the first edition in 2003 by experts in their subfields, the book presents state-of-the-art tools that have revolutionized fluvial geomorphology in recent decades, such as physical and numerical modelling, remote sensing and GIS, new field techniques, advances in dating, tracking and sourcing, statistical approaches as well as more traditional methods such as the systems framework, stratigraphic analysis, form and flow characterisation and historical analysis.   

This book:

  • Covers five main types of geomorphological questions and their associated tools: historical framework; spatial framework; chemical, physical and biological methods; analysis of processes and forms; and future understanding framework.
  • Provides guidance on advantages and limitations of different tools for different applications, data sources, equipment and supplies needed, and case studies illustrating their application in an integrated perspective.

It is an essential resource for researchers and professional geomorphologists, hydrologists, geologists, engineers, planners, and ecologists concerned with river management, conservation and restoration. It is a useful supplementary textbook for upper level undergraduate and graduate courses in Geography, Geology, Environmental Science, Civil and Environmental Engineering, and interdisciplinary courses in river management and restoration.

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Table of Contents

List of Contributors xi

Preface xv

Section I: Background

1 Tools in fluvial geomorphology: problem statement and recent practice 3
G. Mathias Kondolf and Hervé Piégay

1.1 Introduction 3

1.2 Tools and fluvial geomorphology: the terms 4

1.3 What is a tool in fluvial geomorphology? 4

1.4 Overview and trends of tools used in the field 9

1.5 Scope and organization of this book 9

Acknowledgements 11

References 11

Section II: The Temporal Framework: Dating and Assessing Geomorphological Trends

2 Surficial geological tools in fluvial geomorphology 15
Robert B. Jacobson, Jim E. O’Connor and Takashi Oguchi

2.1 Introduction 15

2.2 Overview of surficial geological approaches 15

2.3 Applications of surficial geological approaches to geomorphic interpretation 27

2.4 Summary and conclusions 33

References 34

3 Archaeology and human artefacts 40
Anthony G. Brown, François Petit and L. Allen James

3.1 Introduction 40

3.2 General considerations in using archaeological evidence in geomorphology 40

3.3 Archaeological tools 41

3.4 Legacy sediment 44

3.5 Using archaeological data: case studies 45

3.6 Conclusions 51

References 52

4 Using historical data in fluvial geomorphology 56
Robert C. Grabowski and Angela M. Gurnell

4.1 Introduction 56

4.2 The documentary record 57

4.3 The cartographic record 63

4.4 The topographic record 66

4.5 The modern historical record: remote-sensing 69

4.6 Conclusion 71

Acknowledgements 71

References 71

Section III: The Spatial Framework: Emphasizing Spatial Structure and Nested Character of Fluvial Forms

5 System approaches in fluvial geomorphology 79
Hervé Piégay

5.1 System, fluvial system, hydrosystem 79

5.2 Components of the fluvial system 83

5.3 Fluvial system, a conceptual tool for geomorphologists 84

5.4 Examples of applications 95

5.5 Conclusions 98

Acknowledgements 98

References 100

6 Analysis of aerial photography and other remotely sensed data for fluvial geomorphology and river science 103
David Gilvear and Robert Bryant

6.1 Introduction 103

6.2 The physical basis 103

6.3 River geomorphology and in-channel processes 115

6.4 Floodplain geomorphology and fluvial processes 119

6.5 Conclusions 122

Acknowledgements 122

References 128

7 Geomorphic classification of rivers and streams 133
G. Mathias Kondolf, Hervé Piégay, Laurent Schmitt and David R. Montgomery

7.1 Introduction 133

7.2 Classifications for fluvial understanding 138

7.3 Interactions between geomorphic classifications and ecology 143

7.4 Geomorphic classification and quality of river environments 144

7.5 Applying geomorphic classification schemes to fluvial systems 148

Acknowledgements 153

References 153

8 Modelling catchment processes 159
Peter W. Downs and Rafael Real de Asua

8.1 Introduction 159

8.2 Approaches to catchment processes modelling 160

8.3 Conceptual models 160

8.4 Problem-centred interpretative models 161

8.5 Data-driven empirical models 163

8.6 Numerical models 164

8.7 Tools for developing a catchment process model: representation and accuracy considerations 168

Acknowledgements 174

References 175

Section IV: Chemical, Physical and Biological Evidence: Dating, Emphasizing Spatial Structure and Fluvial Processes

9 Using environmental radionuclides, mineral magnetism and sediment geochemistry for tracing and dating fine fluvial sediments 183
DesWalling and Ian Foster

9.1 Introduction 183

9.2 The tools 183

9.3 Applications 187

9.4 Case study 200

9.5 The prospect 201

References 202

10 Vegetation as a tool in the interpretation of fluvial geomorphic processes and landforms 210
Cliff R. Hupp, Simon Dufour and Gudrun Bornette

10.1 Introduction 210

10.2 Scientific background: plant ecological–fluvial geomorphic relations 210

10.3 Vegetation as a tool: an overview 211

10.4 Dendrogeomorphology in fluvial systems 216

10.5 Description of fluvial landforms through vegetation 220

10.6 Communities as an indicator of disturbance regime 223

10.7 Conclusions 225

References 226

Section V: Analysis of Processes and Forms: Water and Sediment Interactions

11 Channel form and adjustment: characterization, measurement, interpretation and analysis 237
Andrew Simon, Janine Castro and Massimo Rinaldi

11.1 Introduction 237

11.2 Characterization and measurement 237

11.3 Interpretation and analysis 249

11.4 Conclusions 254

References 254

12 Flow measurement and characterization 260
Peter J.Whiting

12.1 Introduction 260

12.2 Velocity measurement 260

12.3 Discharge measurements 265

12.4 Indirect methods of discharge estimation 270

12.5 Flow hydrographs and analysis of flow records 271

12.6 Issues in selecting methods 273

12.7 Conclusion 275

References 275

13 Measuring bed sediment 278
G. Mathias Kondolf andThomas E. Lisle

13.1 Introduction 278

13.2 Attributes and reporting of sediment size distributions 278

13.3 Particle shape and roundness 282

13.4 Surface versus subsurface layers in gravel bed rivers 283

13.5 Sampling sand and finer grained sediment 283

13.6 Sampling and describing the surface of gravel beds 284

13.7 Subsurface sampling methods 289

13.8 Sample size requirements 290

13.9 Comparability of pebble counts and bulk samples 293

13.10 Sampling strategy 293

13.11Applications of bed sediment sampling related to aquatic habitat 295

13.12Case study: determining changes in fine sediment content during flushing flows, Trinity River, California 297

13.13Case study: application of V* to French and Bear Creeks, California 298

13.14Conclusion: selecting an appropriate sampling method 299

Acknowledgement 302

References 302

14 Coarse particle tracing in fluvial geomorphology 306
Marwan A. Hassan and André G. Roy

14.1 Introduction 306

14.2 Tracing methods 312

14.3 Conclusion 319

Acknowledgements 319

References 319

15 Sediment transport 324
D. Murray Hicks and Basil Gomez

15.1 Introduction 324

15.2 Basic concepts 324

15.3 Suspended load sampling and monitoring 326

15.4 Bedload sampling, measurement and prediction 335

15.5 Total load 342

15.6 Estimating sediment yields from reservoir sedimentation 342

15.7 Key points for designing a sediment measurement programme – a summary 343

15.8 Case example: sediment budget for Upper Clutha River, New Zealand 345

Acknowledgements 347

References 347

16 Sediment budgets as an organizing framework in fluvial geomorphology 357
Leslie M. Reid andThomas Dunne

16.1 Introduction 357

16.2 Understanding and assessing components of the sediment system 360

16.3 Designing a sediment budget 366

16.4 Examples 373

16.5 Conclusions 375

References 375

Section VI: Discriminating, Simulating and Modelling Processes and Trends

17 Models in fluvial geomorphology 383
Marco J. Van deWiel, Yannick Y. Rousseau and Stephen E. Darby

17.1 Introduction 383

17.2 Conceptual models 385

17.3 Statistical models 385

17.4 Analytical models 387

17.5 Numerical models 389

17.6 Use of remote sensing and GIS in fluvial geomorphological modelling 393

17.7 Physical models 394

17.8 Overview of the modelling process 394

17.9 Modelling applications in fluvial geomorphology 395

17.10Generic framework for fluvial geomorphological modelling applications 397

17.11Case study: meander dynamics 399

17.12Conclusion 402

Acknowledgements 403

References 403

18 Modelling flow, sediment transport and morphodynamics in rivers 412
Jonathan M. Nelson, Richard R. McDonald, Yasuyuki Shimizu, Ichiro Kimura, Mohamed Nabi and Kazutake Asahi

18.1 Introduction 412

18.2 Flow conservation laws 413

18.3 Sediment-transport relations 420

18.4 Numerical methods 421

18.5 One-dimensional models 422

18.6 Two-dimensional models 423

18.7 Three-dimensional models 426

18.8 Bank evolution models 432

18.9 Bedform models 432

18.10 Practical considerations 435

18.11Conclusions and future directions 439

References 439

19 Modelling fluvial morphodynamics 442
James E. Pizzuto

19.1 Introduction 442

19.2 Modelling longitudinal profiles 443

19.3 Modelling hydraulic geometry of rivers 445

19.4 Modelling channel planforms 447

19.5 Modelling floodplain sedimentation and erosion 450

19.6 Conclusion 451

References 452

20 Experimental studies and practical challenges in fluvial geomorphology 456
François Métivier, Chris Paola, Jessica L. Kozarek and Michal Tal

20.1 Introduction 456

20.2 Experimental methods and facilities 457

20.3 Example experimental studies 463

20.4 Scaling issues and application of experimental results 469

20.5 Additional areas for experimentation 470

20.6 Conclusion 472

Acknowledgements 472

References 472

21 Statistics and fluvial geomorphology 476
Hervé Piégay and Lise Vaudor

21.1 Introduction 476

21.2 Bivariate statistics to explore patterns of forms and their

21.3 Exploration of datasets using multivariate statistics 482

21.4 Describing, explaining and predicting through probabilities and distributions 487

21.5 Describing, explaining and predicting variables in space and time 491

21.6 Relevance and limitations of statistical tools 496

21.7 Conclusion 502

Acknowledgements 503

References 503

Section VII: Conclusion: Applying the Tools

22 Integrating geomorphological tools to address practical problems in river management and restoration 509
Hervé Piégay, G. Mathias Kondolf and David A. Sear

22.1 Introduction 509

22.2 Motivations for applying fluvial geomorphology 509

22.3 Meeting the demand: geomorphological training and application 510

22.4 The role of geomorphology in planning and management 511

22.5 Current geomorphological practices 512

22.6 Case study: preventing erosion risks, from top-down to bottom-up approaches 520

22.7 Case study: pre-appraisal approach for sediment reintroduction in the Rhine: evaluating risks of restoring processes 522

22.8 Case study: the River Wylye: a post-projectmonitoring framework to establish the performance of a range of rehabilitation schemes 524

22.9 Conclusion 527

Acknowledgements 529

References 529

Index 533

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Author Information

Mathias (Matt) Kondolf, Professor of Environmental Planning, University of California Berkeley, USA
Professor Kondolf is a fluvial geomorphologist specializing in environmental river management and restoration. At Berkeley he teaches courses in hydrology, river restoration, and environmental science. His research focuses on human-river interactions, with emphasis on managing of flood-prone lands, managing sediment in rivers and reservoirs, and river restoration, and he has published extensively on these topics. He has served as advisor to US and state agencies on river management and restoration, and provided expert testimony before the US Congress, the California Legislature, and the International Court of Justice and International Court of Arbitration in the Hague.
Hervé Piégay, Research Director at CNRS – National Centre of Scientific Research, ENS of Lyon, France
Professor Piégay is involved in integrated sciences for rivers, and works closely with practitioners, providing knowledge for river management, planning and restoration and methodological frameworks and tools, especially using GIS and remote sensing. As scientific director of the Rhône Observatory of Human and Environment Interactions, he leads an interdisciplinary scientific team conducting research on the Rhône valley, to inform management of the river, its floodplain, and tributaries. He has contributed to more than 200 papers in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters, and has coordinated several edited books.
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