Ecohydrology- the use of water and ecosystem processes for healthy urban environments

  • Zalewski M
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Abstract

Water in the urban space has been considered up to now mostly from the perspective of water supply, sewage purification and storm water management, with increasing awareness of the necessity of freshwater ecosystems conservation. However there has been little holistic consideration of the freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems for moderation and control of the hydrological cycle in the city. Considering the Millennium Development Goals, one of primary dimensions for reduction of poverty, especially at increasing urbanization, is access to save drinking water and a friendly environment. Ecohydrology is a cost efficient technology of water and ecosystems management. Based on the 10-year work developed within the Ecohydrology programme of UNESCO IHP V and VI, it is possible and necessary to translate the experience gained in natural and semi natural ecosystems to problem solving in cities. Existing data proofs that integrating the recently developed engineering solutions with holistic ecohydrological methods based on current understanding of ecosystem functioning as a highly complex system provides the opportunity to increase efficiency of solutions and reduction of costs. Ecohydrology principles provide a new framework for urban water management where the use of ecosystem properties as an integrating management tool should serve to reduce hydro peaking, improve storm water quality and retention, and convert excess nutrients, pollutants and conversion of pollutants into usable goods. In parallel, enhancement of fresh water and green spaces in the city improve human health and quality of life.

Author-supplied keywords

  • city
  • development
  • ecohydrology
  • river rehabilitation
  • urban water management

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  • ISSN: 16423593
  • PUI: 46331938
  • SCOPUS: 2-s2.0-33847350214
  • SGR: 33847350214

Authors

  • M Zalewski

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