AWRA 2010 Spring Specialty Conference
General Topics

AWRA requests abstracts addressing a wide variety of water resources topics to share information, discuss common problems, develop unique solutions, and evaluate the state and future of water resources in the world. The deadline for submission of abstracts is May 14, 2010.

The following general topics will be considered by the Conference Planning Committee for the presentation of papers and posters at this conference. If your topic does not fit in any of the categories listed below please enter it under the last category: "Other Topics Not Listed Above".

Regional Issues Topics »

Regional Issues Topics (click here for a complete description of the topics in this category) focus on issues relative to the Mid-Atlantic region that will give attendees a sense of the wide variety of issues, ecosystems and projects this region experiences and to offer ideas to take home and apply to other regions. Abstracts and papers should show the applicability or relevance of the subject matter discussed to other areas of the country and world. Tell the world what is unique about your project and how it can be used to improve their water resources work!

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Agricultural Hydrology
  • BMP's - design, performance and implementation
  • CAFO's - impacts on water quality
  • Irrigation efficiency
  • Irrigation - present and future
  • Nutrient management
  • Fate and transport of fertilizers
  • Erosion and sedimentation
  • Pesticides
  • Waste management
  • Other

Climate Change

  • Ecosystem migrations
  • Effects of climate change on drought
  • Effects of climate change on floods
  • Impacts on ecosystems
  • Impacts on freshwater availability and supplies
  • Impacts on glaciers and glaciation
  • Impacts on water quality
  • Rain and snowfall issues and distribution
  • Sea level changes
  • Water management in a changing climate
  • Other

Coastal and Oceans

  • Beach erosion
  • Coastal zone management issues
  • Coastal restoration
  • Desalinization
  • Development impacts
  • Dwindling fish and marine mammal populations
  • Harbors and port facilities
  • Hypoxia
  • Ocean disposal of wastewater
  • Salt water-freshwater interfaces
  • Salt water intrusion
  • Subsidence
  • Other


  • Balancing development with ecosystem health
  • Biological sequestration of carbon
  • Buffers
  • Design and construction of created wetlands
  • Developing partnerships with competing water users
  • Ecosystem restoration/mitigation
  • Environmental impacts of diversions
  • Environmental impacts of impoundments
  • Financing environmental/ecosystem restoration - environmental economics
  • Instream flows - ecosystem requirements
  • Invasive species
  • Phreatophytes
  • Restoration successes and failures
  • Riparian restoration
  • Sedimentation in ecosystems
  • Socioeconomic aspects of riparian areas and management
  • Stream ecology
  • Sustainability
  • Other

Forest Hydrology

  • Fire and water quality
  • Hill slope hydrology
  • Forest roads
  • Reforestation of recharge areas
  • Timber harvesting and flooding
  • Timber harvesting and water quality
  • Other


  • Aquifer storage and recovery (ASR)
  • Artificial Recharge
  • Confined and unconfined aquifers
  • Deep well injection
  • Groundwater movement (flow systems)
  • Groundwater protection/sustainability
  • Hydrogeochemistry
  • Impacts of mining
  • Natural infiltration, recharge and source area
  • Nonrenewable groundwater
  • Springs
  • Storm water infiltration
  • Surface water/groundwater/ecosystem interactions
  • Water level changes
  • Water quality in aquifers
  • Other

Information Management and Tools

  • Adaptive management
  • Communicating science to policy makers
  • Decision support systems
  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • Innovative techniques
  • Internet
  • Modeling
  • Real time data
  • Remote sensing
  • Technology information and dissemination
  • Other

International Issues

  • Appropriate technologies for developing areas/nations
  • Cross-border compacts, transfers, and allocations
  • Globalization of water issues
  • Hydrophilanthropy
  • International regulatory conflicts
  • Management principles
  • Privatization of utilities; infrastructure
  • Responsibilities of developed nations to developing nations
  • Sustainable water resources development
  • Technology sharing
  • Water rights issues
  • Water security
  • World Water Forums
  • Other


  • Aging infrastructure
  • Creative financing of infrastructures
  • Drain to disposal infrastructure
  • Green infrastructure
  • Harbors and port facilities
  • Impoundments/dams - construction, restoration, removal
  • Levees and flood walls
  • Navigation in inland waterways
  • River channelization, dredging
  • Source water to tap infrastructure
  • Other

Non-Potable Water

  • Acid mine drainage
  • Alternative supplies
  • Disposal/treatment of cooling water
  • Downstream impacts of mine tailings
  • High temperature brines
  • Industrial uses
  • Mining uses/impacts on water quality
  • Reuse
  • Waste management and disposal
  • Other


  • Alternative supplies
  • Balancing development and the environment
  • Drought planning
  • Forest planning
  • Future supplies
  • Integrated water resources planning
  • Land use planning
  • Reclaimed water
  • Sustainable development
  • System security
  • Urban planning
  • Watershed protection
  • Other

Policy and Legal

  • Adapting government programs to management and regulation
  • Communicating with policy makers
  • Compacts
  • History of water laws/policy
  • Innovative marketing/banking
  • Integration of water quality and water quantity management
  • Legislative initiatives, state and federal
  • Market-based solutions to scarcity or overabundance
  • Meeting and managing demand
  • National water vision/strategy
  • Political hydrology
  • Range planning and management
  • Safeguarding water supplies
  • Water law
  • Water transfers- benefits/costs
  • Other

Surface Water

  • Best Management Practices (BMP)
  • Economics and sustainability of protected floodplains
  • Energy production
  • Flood forecasting, warning, preparedness
  • Flood protection
  • Flooding and floodplain management
  • Fluvial geomorphology
  • Innovative technologies of storm water management
  • Management of combined sewer overflows
  • Managing competing uses and needs
  • Managing nonpoint source pollution
  • Managing point source pollution
  • Mitigating storm water damage/retrofitting
  • River operations - flow management
  • Storm water management - innovative technologies
  • Stream channel processes
  • System operation and maintenance
  • Watershed planning and management
  • Other


  • Community based restoration and management
  • Financing restoration and volunteer efforts
  • Hydrologic changes - effects on urban streams and floodplains
  • Infiltration and runoff
  • Land use changes
  • Residential land stewardship
  • Urban storm water impacts
  • Volunteer restoration and management initiatives
  • Water saving techniques and initiatives
  • Other

Water Aesthetics

  • Art
  • Literature
  • Music
  • Other

Water and Energy

  • Alternative energy sources and water
  • Energy - water nexus
  • Hydropower
  • Other

Water Quality

  • Effects of dredging and other stream management techniques on water quality
  • Emerging contaminants
  • Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)
  • Impacts of storm water on water quality
  • Implementing TMDL's
  • Laboratory methodologies
  • Low flow/high flow/combined TMDL's
  • Monitoring
  • Nanotechnology
  • Nutrients and nutrient management
  • Pathogens in watersheds
  • Pesticides
  • Salinity removal techniques; successes and failures
  • Source water quality protection
  • Turbidity and sediment impacts
  • Water quality standards and regulations
  • Other

Water Resources Education

  • Certification of water resources professionals
  • Education at K-12 levels
  • Licensing or registration of water resources professionals
  • Native American water issues
  • Post K-12 education
  • Sustainability issues - watershed management and stewardship
  • Water in literature, culture, art, and music
  • Other

Water Supply

  • Alternative supplies
  • Conjunctive use
  • Conservation
  • Development
  • Source water protection
  • Sustainability
  • Treatment
  • Quality
  • Other

Wetlands and Lakes

  • Conflicting issues
  • Created wetland successes
  • Design and construction of created wetlands
  • Effects of acid rain
  • Eutrophication
  • Lake management and restoration
  • Mitigation
  • Nutrient impacts
  • Regulations
  • Reservoir management and restoration
  • Sedimentation
  • Shoreline maintenance and restoration
  • Tourism and recreation
  • Watershed/wetland/lake interactions
  • Wetland functions and values
  • Wetland restoration and protection
  • Other

Water Resources in the Next Decade

  • Water Resources Sustainability
  • Water Resources Education and Information
  • Water Resources and Climate
  • Global Water Problems
  • Infrastructure Concerns
  • Watershed Management Problems
  • Institutional Effects on Water Availability
  • Concerns in Water Resources Management Decisions
  • Water and Energy
  • Concerns about Water Quality
  • Other

Other Related Topics
  • Other

Regional Issues

These tracks focus on issues relative to the Mid-Atlantic region that will give our attendees a sense of the wide variety of issues, ecosystems and projects that we experience and to give them ideas to take home and apply to their own regions. Abstracts and papers should show the applicability or relevance of the subject matter discussed to other areas of the country and world. Tell the world what is unique about your project and how they can use it to improve their water resources work!

The Delaware River Basin Experience: Challenges and Opportunities Facing Four States, One River
Researchers, practitioners and regulators in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware share management of the Delaware River. Approximately 15 million people, or 5% of the population of the United States, rely on the groundwater and surface water resources of this 13,539 mi2 watershed (Water Resources Plan for the Delaware River Basin, Delaware River Basin Commission, 2004). Four states, 42 counties and 838 municipalities are part of this watershed, which has many different faces, from a small, primarily recreational resource in the headwaters to a commercial waterway near the Delaware Estuary.

The Chesapeake Bay Experience: Challenges and Opportunities Facing the Largest Estuary in the United States
The Chesapeake Bay is the largest estuary in the United States. It spans more than 64,000 mi2, six states (DE, NJ, PA, NY, MD, and VA) and the entire District of Columbia. The varied geography of this watershed hosts an array of plants and animals in diverse habitats. Sixteen million people live, work and play in this watershed and the bay itself provides food, water, cover and nesting or nursery areas to more than 3,000 migratory and resident wildlife species. The Chesapeake Bay was the first estuary in the nation to be targeted for restoration as an integrated watershed and ecosystem. Researchers, practitioners, and regulators have set water quality goals, developed unique tools to measure progress, and implemented innovative projects as a result of these restoration efforts.

The Coastal Experience: Challenges and Lessons Learned in a Coastal Ecosystem
The mid-Atlantic is home to many unique coastal ecosystems, including the Delaware Inland Bays, Delaware Seashore, Delaware Estuary, New Jersey Barnegat Bay, New Jersey Meadowlands and New York/New Jersey Harbor Estuary. The management of these ecosystems presents a different set of challenges than those associated with freshwater ecosystems. Local researchers and practitioners will share their insight into these challenges and provide lessons learned that can be transferred to other geographic areas.

Regional Planning: Coordinating Water Resources in the Mid-Atlantic Region
Due to the geography of the northeast it is critical to coordinate multiple jurisdictions and stakeholders in water resources planning. Perhaps one of the biggest challenges to water resources management is the coordination these entities. The Mid-Atlantic region provides several examples of interstate and interjurisdictional coordination, such as New Jersey's Pinelands National Preserve and Comprehensive Management Plan, Highlands Water Protection and Planning Act and Regional Master Plan, and Delaware's Tributary Strategies, and Source Water Protection Plans. Planners and practitioners will discuss the challenges and opportunities in regional water resources planning.

The Delaware River Basin Experience, the Chesapeake Bay Experience, the Coastal Experience and Regional Planning will be offered as four separate tracks. Topics may include:

  • Competing Watershed Resources - commercial, economic, recreational, ecological, water supply
  • Management & Restoration - flood control, dredging, water quality, dam removal, beach replenishment,
  • Wetland restoration, best management practices, land use, groundwater
  • TMDLs - setting and achieving realistic goals
  • Economics of multi-state watersheds
  • Offshore development
  • Climate change
  • Funding mechanisms
  • Education and outreach
  • Monitoring, evaluation and adaptive management
  • Interstate and inter-jurisdictional coordination and implementation
  • Other