Updated knowledge on floods and risk management in the Middle Ebro River: The “Anthropocene” context and river resilience

Alfredo Ollero, J.Horacio García, Askoa Ibisate, Miguel Sánchez-Fabre

Abstract


The floods of 2015 and 2018 in the Middle Ebro River have led to a rethinking and updating of the forecasting and management systems. The improvements in the flow measurement systems applied in this type of extreme phenomena have led to questioning the values that were recorded in the past, officially changing the maximum flow rates of some historical floods. This has called for the need to update the knowledge/information of those recorded in the middle Ebro River, for example changing the return periods and making previous scientific studies obsolete. Updated data are applied, trying to re-characterize the floods of Ebro River since 1950, date in which the beginning of the “Anthropocene” is evident in the river management of the mainstream and its basin. At the same time, in the proposed risk management plans compliant with 2007/60/EC Directive, the structural measures are being replaced by more respectful and better adapted prevention systems for the river. The two processes interact and are essential for educating the population on risk, adopting preventive measures that are sustainable and consistent with the authentic (corrected) characteristics of the river and its floods. Thus, scientific knowledge has been consolidated as a tool to display corrected data, or, the river’s updated reality, and also to make the affected inhabitants aware of the need to follow new management protocols, focused on river resilience and social strategies.

Keywords


flooding; discharge data; flood risk; global change; mitigation measures

Full Text:

PDF

References


Balasch, J.C., Pino, D., Ruiz Bellet, J.L., Tuset, J., Barriendos, M., Castelltort, X., Peña, J.C. 2019. The extreme floods in the Ebro River basin since 1600 CE. Science of the Total Environment 646, 645-660. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.07.325.

Batalla, R.J., Gómez, C.M., Kondolf, G.M. 2004. Reservoir-induced hydrological changes in the Ebro river basin (NE Spain). Journal of Hydrology 290, 117-136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2003.12.002.

Batica, J., Gourbesville, P. 2016. Resilience in flood risk management: a new communication tool. Procedia Engineering 154, 811-817. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.proeng.2016.07.411.

Beguería, S., López-Moreno, J.I., Lorente, A., Seeger, M., García-Ruiz, J.M. 2003. Assessing the effect of climate oscillations and land-use changes on streamflow in the Central Spanish Pyrenees. Ambio 32 (4), 283-286. https://doi.org/10.1579/0044-7447-32.4.283.

Cabezas, A., Comín, F.A., Beguería, S., Trabucchi, M. 2009. Hydrologic and landscape changes in the Middle Ebro River (NE Spain): implications for restoration and management. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 13, 1-12. https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-13-273-2009.

Constante, A., Peña, J.L., Muñoz, A., Picazo, J. 2010. Climate and anthropogenic factors affecting alluvial fan development during the late Holocene in the central Ebro Valley, northeast Spain. The Holocene 21 (2), 275-286. https://doi.org/10.1177/0959683610378873.

De Bruijn, K.M. 2005. Resilience and flood risk management: a systems approach applied to lowland rivers. DUP Science, Delft, 210 pp.

Díaz Redondo, M., Marchamalo, M., Egger, G., Magdaleno, F. 2018. Toward floodplain rejuvenation in the middle Ebro River (Spain): from history to action. Geomorphology 317, 117-127. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2018.05.014.

Domenech, S., Ollero, A., Sánchez Fabre, M. 2008. Núcleos de población en riesgo de inundación fluvial en Aragón: diagnóstico y evaluación para la ordenación del territorio. Geographicalia 54, 17-44. https://doi.org/10.26754/ojs_geoph/geoph.2008541095.

García-Ruiz, J.M., Lana-Renault, N. 2011. Hydrological and erosive consequences of farmland abandonment in Europe, with special reference to the Mediterranean region. A review. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 140 (3-4), 317-338. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.agee.2011.01.003.

García-Ruiz, J. M., López-Moreno, J. I., Vicente-Serrano, S. M., Lasanta T., Beguería, S. 2011. Mediterranean water resources in a global change scenario. Earth Science Reviews 105 (3-4), 121-139. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2011.01.006.

García Ruiz, J.M., López Moreno, J.I., Lasanta, T., Vicente, S.M., González Sampériz, P., Valero, B.L., Sanjuán, Y., Beguería, S., Nadal, E., Lana-Renault, N., Gómez Villar, A. 2015. Los efectos geoecológicos del cambio global en el Pirineo central español: una revisión a distintas escalas espaciales y temporales. Pirineos 170, e012. https://doi.org/10.3989/Pirineos.2015.170005.

García-Vera, M.A. 2013. The application of hydrological planning as a climate change adaptation tool in the Ebro basin. Water Resources Development 29(2), 219-236. https://doi.org/10.1080/07900627.2012.747128.

Gargantilla, D., Calvo, A., Chopo, S., Polanco, L., Moreno, M.L., Pardos, M., San Roman, J., Gómez, R. 2020. Prevención, protección, preparación y reparación: medidas para la disminución del riesgo de inundación en el eje del Ebro. Boletín CIREF 12 (in press).

Guillén, J., Palanques, A. 1997. A historical perspective of the morphological evolution in the lower Ebro river. Environmental Geology 30 (3/4), 174-180. https://doi.org/10.1007/s002540050144.

Hillman, M. 2009. Integrating knowledge: the key challenge for a new paradigm in river management. Geography Compass 3 (6), 1988-2010. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1749-8198.2009.00278.x.

Horacio, J., Ollero, A., Noguera, I., Fernández Pasquier, V. 2019. Flooding, channel dynamics and transverse infrastructure: a challenge for Middle Ebro river management. Journal of Maps 15 (2), 310-319. https://doi.org/10.1080/17445647.2019.1592719.

Klijn, F., Kreibich, H., De Moel, H., Penning-Rowsell, E. 2015. Adaptive flood risk management planning based on a comprehensive flood risk conceptualisation. Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change 20 (6), 845-864. https://doi.org10.1007/s11027-015-9638-z.

López-Moreno, J.I., Vicente-Serrano, S.M., Moran-Tejeda, E., Zabalza, J., Lorenzo-Lacruz, J., García-Ruiz, J.M. 2011. Impact of climate evolution and land use changes on water yield in the Ebro basin. Hydrology and Earth System Science 15, 311-322. https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-15-311-2011.

López-Moreno, J.I., Vicente-Serrano, S.M., Revuelto, J., Gilaberte, M., Azorín-Molina, C., Morán-Tejeda, E., García-Ruiz, J.M., Tague, C. 2014. Respuesta hidrológica del Pirineo central al cambio ambiental proyectado para el siglo XXI. Pirineos, Revista de Ecología de Montaña 169. https://doi.org/10.3989/Pirineos.2014.169004.

Lorenzo-Lacruz, J., Vicente-Serrano, S.M., López-Moreno, J.I., Morán-Tejeda, E., Zabalza, J. 2012. Recent trends in Iberian streamflows (1945-2005). Journal of Hydrology 414-415, 463-475. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2011.11.023.

Magdaleno, F. 2011. Evolución hidrogeomorfológica del sector central del río Ebro a lo largo del siglo XX. Implicaciones ecológicas para su restauración. Tesis doctoral, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid.

Maldonado, A. 1972. El Delta del Ebro. Estudio sedimentológico y estratigráfico. Boletín de Estratigrafía, 1, Universidad de Barcelona, 486 p.

Martín Vide, J.P. (Coord.). 2018. Estudio del equilibrio sedimentario del río Ebro en el tramo urbano de Zaragoza. Informe inédito, Ayuntamiento de Zaragoza.

Najes, L., Ollero, A., Sánchez Fabre, M. 2019. Evolución y dinámica geomorfológica actual del río Ebro en la Reserva Natural Dirigida de los Sotos y Galachos (Zaragoza). Cuaternario y Geomorfología 33 (1-2), 47-63. https://doi.org/10.17735/cyg.v33i1-2.67874.

Ollero, A. 1992. Los meandros libres del río Ebro (Logroño-La Zaida): geomorfología fluvial, ecogeografía y riesgos. Tesis doctoral, Universidad de Zaragoza.

Ollero, A. 2010. Channel changes and floodplain management in the meandering middle Ebro River, Spain. Geomorphology 117, 247-260. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2009.01.015.

Ollero, A. 2011. Los cauces fluviales como indicadores de cambio global: propuesta metodológica. Zubía monográfico 23, 187-200.

Ollero, A., Ibisate, A., Granado, D., Real de Asua, R. 2015. Channel responses to global change and local impacts: perspectives and tools for floodplain management (Ebro River and tributaries, NE Spain). In: P.F. Hudson, H. Middelkoop (Eds.), Geomorphic Approaches to Integrated Floodplain Management of Lowland Fluvial Systems in North America and Europe. Springer, New York, pp. 27-52.

Ollero, A., Ibisate, A., Acín, V., Ballarín, D., Granado, D., Horacio, J., Mora, D., Nadal, E., Sánchez Fabre, M., Sebastián, M., Segura, F., Valls, A. 2017. Dynamique fluviale, changement global et pression anthropique dans le bassin, le cours et le delta de l’Èbre. Sud-Ouest Européen 44, 41-54. https://doi.org/10.4000/soe.3186.

Parsons, M., Thoms, M.C. 2018. From academic to applied: Operationalising resilience in river systems. Geomorphology 305, 242-251. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2017.08.040.

Pueyo, Á., Climent, E., Ollero, A., Pellicer, F., Peña, J.L., Sebastián, M. 2018. L’interaction entre Saragosse et ses cours d’eau: évolution, conflits et perspectives. Sud-Ouest Européen, 44, 7-23. https://doi.org/10.4000/soe.3040.

Rull, V. 2018. El Antropoceno. Ed. Catarata, CSIC, 141 p.

Sánchez Fabre, M., Ballarín, D., Mora, D., Ollero, A., Serrano Notivoli, R., Saz, M.A. 2015. Las crecidas del Ebro medio en el comienzo del siglo XXI. In: J. De la Riva, P. Ibarra, R. Montorio, M. Rodrigues (Eds.), Análisis espacial y representación geográfica: innovación y aplicación. Universidad de Zaragoza y AGE, Zaragoza, pp. 1853-1862.

Sánchez Fabre, M., Ollero, A., Moreno, M.L., Losada, J.A., Sánchez Puertas, R., Serrano Notivoli, R. 2017. Évolution hydrologique et inondations récentes dans l’Èbre moyen. Sud-Ouest Européen 44, 97-116. https://doi.org/10.4000/soe.3474.

Steffen, W., Sanderson, A., Jäger, J., Tyson, P.D., Moore III, B., Matson, P.A., Richardson, K., Oldfield, F., Schellnhuber, H.J., Turner II, B.L., Wasson, R.J. 2004. Global change and the Earth system: a planet under pressure. Springer, Heidelberg.

Stoppani, A. 1873. Corso di Geologia. Volume II: Geologia Stratigrafica. G. Bernardoni e G. Brigola Editori, Milan.

Van Wesenbeeck, B.K., Ijff, S., Jongman, B., Balog, S., Kaupa, S., Bosche, L., Lange, G.M., Holm-Nielsen, N., Nieboer, H., Taishi, Y., Kurukulasuriya, P., Meliane, I. 2017. Medidas de protección contra inundaciones basadas en la naturaleza. Principios y orientaciones para la implementación. Deltares y Banco Mundial, Washington.

Waters, C.N., Zalasiewicz, J., Summerhayes, C., Barnosky, A.D, Poirier, C., Galuszka, A., Cearreta, A., Edgeworth, M., Ellis, E.C., Jeandel, C., Leinfelder, R., McNeill, J.R., Richter, D. de B., Steffen, W., Syvitski, J., Vidas, D., Wagreich, M., Williams, M., Zhisheng, A., Grinevald, J., Odada, E., Oreskes, N., Wolfe, A.P. 2016. The Anthropocene is functionally and stratigraphically distinct from the Holocene. Science 351 (6269). htpps://doi.org/10.1126/science.aad2622.

Waylen, K.A., Holstead, K.L., Colley, K., Hopkins, J. 2018. Challenges to enabling and implementing Natural Flood Management in Scotland. Journal of Flood Risk Management 11, 1078-1089. https://doi.org/10.1111/jfr3.12301.

Woodward, M., Kapelan, Z., Gouldby, B. 2014. Adaptive flood risk management under climate change uncertainty using real options and optimization. Risk Analysis 34(1), 75-92. https://doi.org/10.1111/risa.12088.

Zalasiewicz, J., Waters, C.N., Summerhayes, C., Wolfe, A.P., Barnosky, A.D., Cearreta, A., Crutzen, P., Ellis, E.C., Fairchild, I.J., Gałuszka, A., Haff, P., Hajdas, I., Head, M.J., Ivar do Sul, J., Jeandel, C., Leinfelder, R., McNeill, J.R., Neal, C., Odada, E., Oreskes, N., Steffen, W., Syvitski, J.P.M., Wagreich, M., Williams, M. 2017. The Working Group on the 'Anthropocene': summary of evidence and recommendations. Anthropocene 19, 55-60. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ancene.2017.09.001.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.18172/cig.4730

Copyright (c) 2021 Alfredo Ollero, J.Horacio García, Askoa Ibisate, Miguel Sánchez-Fabre

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

© Universidad de La Rioja, 2013

ISSN 0211-6820

EISSN 1697-9540