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[en] Highlights: • Multi-hazard exposure, vulnerability and risk of deltaic social-ecological systems • Novel modular, indicator library-based concept and methodology • Consideration of hazard-dependent and independent vulnerability indicators • Blueprint for vulnerability and risk assessments within and across deltas globally • Ecological dimension should be considered more systematically in risk assessments Coastal river deltas are hotspots of global change impacts. Sustainable delta futures are increasingly threatened due to rising hazard exposure combined with high vulnerabilities of deltaic social-ecological systems. While the need for integrated multi-hazard approaches has been clearly articulated, studies on vulnerability and risk in deltas either focus on local case studies or single hazards and do not apply a social-ecological systems perspective. As a result, vulnerabilities and risks in areas with strong social and ecological coupling, such as coastal deltas, are not fully understood and the identification of risk reduction and adaptation strategies are often based on incomplete assumptions. To overcome these limitations, we propose an innovative modular indicator library-based approach for the assessment of multi-hazard risk of social-ecological systems across and within coastal deltas globally, and apply it to the Amazon, Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna (GBM), and Mekong deltas. Results show that multi-hazard risk is highest in the GBM delta and lowest in the Amazon delta. The analysis reveals major differences between social and environmental vulnerability across the three deltas, notably in the Mekong and the GBM deltas where environmental vulnerability is significantly higher than social vulnerability. Hotspots and drivers of risk vary spatially, thus calling for spatially targeted risk reduction and adaptation strategies within the deltas. Ecosystems have been identified as both an important element at risk as well as an entry point for risk reduction and adaptation strategies.
[en] The concentration of dissolved uranium has been determined in over 250 river waters from the Orinoco, Amazon, and Ganges basins. Uranium concentrations are largely determined by dissolution of limestones, although weathering of black shales represents an important additional source in some basins. In shield terrains the level of dissolved U is transport limited. Data from the Amazon indicate that floodplains do not represent a significant source of U in river waters. In addition, the authors have determined dissolved U levels in forty rivers from around the world and coupled these data with previous measurements to obtain an estimate for the global flux of dissolved U to the oceans. The average concentration of U in river waters is 1.3 nmol/kg, but this value is biased by very high levels observed in the Ganges-Brahmaputra and Yellow rivers. When these river systems are excluded from the budget, the global average falls to 0.78 nmol/kg. The global riverine U flux lies in the range of 3-6 x 107 mol/yr. The major uncertainty that restricts the accuracy of this estimate (and that of all other dissolved riverine fluxes) is the difficulty in obtaining representative samples from rivers which show large seasonal and annual variations in runoff and dissolved load
[en] After an introductory part concerned with general requirements and properties of models, model calculation dealing with the dispersion of radioactive substances in the Austrian part of the Danube River are shown. The chosen model is a deterministic one which takes into account dilution, dacay and retention. Key parameters are identified for some radiological important radionuclides. (Author)
[en] The radial sand ridge system (RSRS) located at Jiangsu coast of China attracts much attention on its origin and mechanic of formation for its special structure and potential land resource. Due to complicated hydrodynamic condition, the Jiangsu RSRS is a hot debated on its potential sources, Yangtze River or Yellow River? We collected ten sand samples from surface sediments along the west coast of Bohai Sea and Yellow Sea from the modern Yellow River estuary to Yangtze River estuary in summer, 2013. The samples are analyzed by method of detrital zircon age for source identification of the RSRS sediments. The U-Pb age spectra of detrital zircon grains of the samples show a wide range from Cenozoic to Late Archean with several age peaks. Comparing the age spectra between the Yangtze River and the Yellow River, the detrital zircons have younger age (<100 Ma) group in the Yangtze River. These age distribution of the Jiangsu coastal RSRS sediments are similar to that of the Yangtze River, but different from the Yellow River. The samples located adjacent to the old Yellow River Delta show more wide-range age distribution, implying a compounded origination from the both rivers. Based on these findings it is proposed that, contrary to common opinion, the main sediment source of the Jiangsu RSRS is the Yangtze River, rather than the Yellow River. By implication, there should be evidence of hydrodynamic mechanics of oceanic currents and tidal motion. This aspect awaits confirmation in future research.
[en] A deterministic model was used for predicting the activity concentration of radionuclides in rivers. The model was validated in the framework of VAMP, aquatic working group, river subgroup, where scenarios as Clinch-Tennessee rivers as well as Dnjepr river were provided. This was a good chance to test the predictive power of the model. Some of the results of this exercise are presented. (author)
[en] A heat danger day is defined as an extreme when the heat stress index (a combined temperature and humidity measure) exceeding 41 °C, warranting public heat alerts. This study assesses future heat risk (i.e. heat danger days times the population at risk) based on the latest Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 6 projections. In recent decades (1995–2014) China’s urban agglomerations (Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei, Yangtze River Delta, Middle Yangtze River, Chongqing-Chengdu, and Pearl River Delta (PRD)) experienced no more than three heat danger days per year, but this number is projected to increase to 3–13 days during the population explosion period (2041–2060) under the high-emission shared socioeconomic pathways (SSP3-7.0 and SSP5-8.5). This increase will result in approximately 260 million people in these agglomerations facing more than three heat danger days annually, accounting for 19% of the total population of China, and will double the current level of overall heat risk. During the period 2081–2100, there will be 8–67 heat danger days per year, 60%–90% of the urban agglomerations will exceed the current baseline number, and nearly 310 million people (39% of the total China population) will be exposed to the danger, with the overall heat risk exceeding 18 times the present level. The greatest risk is projected in the PRD region with 67 heat danger days to occur annually under SSP5-8.5. With 65 million people (68% of the total population) experiencing increased heat danger days, the overall heat risk in the region will swell by a factor of 50. Conversely, under the low-emission pathways (SSP1-2.6 and SSP2-4.5), the annual heat danger days will remain similar to the present level or increase slightly. The result indicates the need to develop strategic plans to avoid the increased heat risk of urban agglomerations under high emission-population pathways. (letter)
[en] The purpose of this report is to present, in the light of the information and experience accumulated to date, those principles and practices which, if applied to the disposal of radioactive wastes into inland surface and estuarial waters will ensure that man will not experience radiation exposures that are above the limits recommended by the International Commission for Radiation Protection (ICRP); and further, that radiation exposures are kept as far below those limits as is practicable. Disposal into sub-surface waters has not been specifically considered as this topic has been covered in another International Atomic Energy Agency publication. The report discusses the mechanisms and parameters which affect and control the fate of radionuclides introduced into fresh waters; it discusses the concepts of ''critical nuclide'', ''critical pathway'' and ''critical population group'' and demonstrates how the use of these concepts provides a sound, convenient and economical means for setting discharge limits and maintaining a continuing surveillance. It offers practical advice on the use of these concepts; gives some detailed information on uptake and dispersion mechanisms; and offers instruction on how to use this information and these concepts to estimate potential radiation doses and thus establish discharge limits.
[en] Highlights: • Frequency and fraction of compound heat extremes increased in most parts of China, especially in populated and urbanized areas • Urbanization contributes to 31.58% (20.70%) of the total trend of compound heatwave frequency (fraction) in the urban areas • Urbanization tends to amplify compound heat events in northern and eastern China and weaken those in the central and west Summertime extreme heat events exert severe impacts on the natural environment and human society, especially in densely populated and highly urbanized regions. While previous studies have focused on independent heat day/night, there is a lack of attention to the changes in compound events with cooccurring daytime and nighttime extreme temperature on the same day. In this study, we examine the spatio-temporal changes of summertime compound heat extremes (including compound heat day and compound heatwave) across China, with a particular focus on 20 major urban agglomerations (UAs), and quantify the urbanization effects on these changes. We find that the frequency and fraction of compound heat events show obvious spatial disparities across China. The compound heat events occur more frequently in highly populated and urbanized areas such as the Pearl River Delta. Moreover, the frequency and fraction of compound heat events have significantly increased in recent decades in most parts of China, especially in more developed UAs. These intensifying trends have even accelerated in more recent decades. Our further investigations suggest that most UAs of China experienced an intensifying urbanization effect on compound heat events, and few UAs in northwestern and central China (e.g., UAs of the north Tianshan mountain and the middle reaches of the Yangtze River) display a weakening effect of urbanization. Our findings highlight the important role of urbanization in increasing compound heat extremes and suggest that the increasing threats of compound events in urban areas should be given more attention under the context of global warming and local urbanization.
[en] Highlights: • A bio-hydrogeomorphic model was developed to investigate landscape dynamics under Spartina alterniflora invasion. • Salt marsh transformed from a stabilized to a self-organized system due to the significant geomorphic-biological feedback. • The stress divergence feedback and interspecific interaction could account for the channel initiation in the middle-elevated channel formation. • The Spartina alterniflora marsh dimension and hydrodynamic magnitude manifested the biogeomorphic feedback from patch scale to landscape scale. The mechanisms of biogeomorphic feedbacks and its influencing factors have been extensively studied for pioneer species colonization in tidal environment. However, biogeomorphic impacts of alien species over the entire invasion process coupled with hydro-geomorphologic processes and ecoengineering traits still lack sufficient understanding to forecast salt marsh succession. In this study, we developed a bio-hydrogeomorphic model to account for the tidal platform evolution and vegetation distribution under Spartina alterniflora invasion in the Yellow River Delta, China. Our field observation and modelling results revealed that salt marsh transformed from a stabilized to a self-organized system due to the significant geomorphic-biological feedback under Spartina alterniflora invasion. Tidal channels took shape differently along the elevation gradient of the intertidal platform. Patch-scale feedbacks promoted the channel initiation in the low-elevated zone during early colonization phase. While landscape-scale feedbacks dominated channel incision in the middle to high platform during the mature phase. Specifically, the channel initiation in the middle-elevated ecotone could be attributed to the change from homogenous sheet flow to concentrated channel flow along the marsh edge, which was determined by tidal prism and discrepancy in organism traits. Hence, our study showed that scale-dependent feedback and gaps in ecoengineering capacity of organism determined the morphological variation in the invasive ecosystem. This would provide the insights into biogeomorphic impacts of invasive species and scientific conservation for native ecosystems.
[en] In 1994, the Nez Perce Tribe began a smolt monitoring study on the Imnaha River in cooperation with the Fish Passage Center (FPC). A rotary screw trap was used to collect emigrating wild and hatchery chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) and steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) smolts from March 1 to June 15, 1994. We PIT tagged and released 956 wild chinook salmon, 661 hatchery chinook salmon, 1,432 wild steelhead trout and 2,029 hatchery steelhead trout. Cumulative interrogation rates at mainstem Snake and Columbia River dams were 62.2% for wild chinook salmon, 45.2% for hatchery chinook salmon, 51.3% for wild steelhead trout, and 34.3% for hatchery steelhead trout