Urban Creek Flow, Re-aeration and Microbial Processes Determine Ecological Health
Water flow controls down stream ecosystem processes and health. The challenge here was to determine the impacts of flow events on the ecological processes in a creek within an urban (modified) catchment. For two years we studied the health of Moggill Creek, a lowland freshwater creek that flowed through the western suburbs of Brisbane Qld, Australia. Water column dissolved oxygen concentrations and Creek health relied on flow during rain events to physically re-aerate the water to counter the high input of dissolved organic carbon that drove very rapid bacterial consumption of oxygen. A combination of organic load and aeration through storm flow events dictated the health of the system. The project showed the importance of understanding the relationship between the dissolved organic carbon loads, re-aeration rate and water flow in water sensitive urban design to re-create the health of urban streams.
8th International Water Sensitive Urban Design Conference 2013