Preliminary Steps for the Assessment of Instream Flow Needs in the North Saskatchewan River Basin

This project, “Preliminary Steps for the Assessment of Instream Flow Needs in the North Saskatchewan River Basin”, is intended to provide further guidance to the NSWA and its stakeholders on the assessment of Instream Flow Needs (IFN) in the North Saskatchewan River (NSR) watershed.   
This project is also intended to support an ongoing discussion of water resources management in this river basin and assist in long‐term planning.

The report includes a brief history of Alberta’s water management legislation, the current water management system, and the use of IFN assessments in that system.  It also outlines the range of instream water uses to be considered and existing guidance for assessing Instream Flow Needs.  A major element of the project was convening an expert advisory group to review IFN needs and priorities for the NSR watershed. The result was the identification of three broad priorities: leadership and engagement of stakeholders in IFN discussions; access to more hydrologic information and development of water management models; and more information on the state of aquatic and riparian ecosystems, and fisheries, throughout the watershed.  

This report also contains a preliminary assessment of environmental flow requirements, calculated using the Alberta Desktop Method, for certain locations on the mainstem NSR where natural flow data were available. The effects of hydro‐electric dams on the annual hydrograph were characterized in this assessment, as were diurnal flow fluctuations.  A comparison of recorded flows versus environmental flow requirements was also conducted for the Sturgeon River.

INSTREAM FLOW NEEDS REPORT TEXT
including appendix 1 (IFN Workshop Results) 

 

APPENDIX 2 (Environmental Flows & Water Management Planning) Part One

 

APPENDIX 2 (Environmental Flows & Water Management Planning) Part Two

 

APPENDIX 3 (NSR Basin: Comparison of Historical Observed Flows to Desktop IFN)
plus Conclusions & Recommendations

Date published: 
2014
Resource Type: