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Daryl Hughes

Frameworks for dam removal initiatives.

Project title

Understanding and communicating impacts of water resource infrastructure removal


Project description

Society’s water requirements and environmental attitudes are changing. Dam removal is receiving increasing attention as a tool for restoring rivers and lakes. Yet some previous dam removal initiatives have failed due to stakeholder opposition.

United Utilities are currently building a new water supply network through the Lake District National Park. This work is driven by environmental legislation and business imperatives.

As part of this, they are also investigating the feasibility of removing the weir at the iconic Crummock Water. The main aim of this research project is to develop a deep understanding of the physical and social aspects of Crummock Water. An improved understanding will allow the development of a framework for future dam removal initiatives.

This research project has three objectives:

  1. To assess the physical impacts of decommissioning on hydrology, ecology, and flooding. Daryl will use hydrometric monitoring, modelling, ground investigation, and historical archive material.
  2. To understand the views of stakeholders, and how these influence the decision-making process. Daryl will use interviews and questionnaires.
  3. To develop immersive visualisations to communicate potential changes. Daryl will assess whether these are an effective means of communication with stakeholders.