University of Oulu

Aziza Baubekova, Mahdi Akbari, Hana Etemadi, Faisal Bin Ashraf, Aliakbar Hekmatzadeh, Ali Torabi Haghighi, Causes & effects of upstream-downstream flow regime alteration over Catchment-Estuary-Coastal systems, Science of The Total Environment, Volume 858, Part 3, 2023, 160045, ISSN 0048-9697,

Causes & effects of upstream-downstream flow regime alteration over Catchment-Estuary-Coastal systems

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Author: Baubekova, Aziza1; Akbari, Mahdi1; Etemadi, Hana2;
Organizations: 1Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit, University of Oulu, Finland
2Environmental Science, Persian Gulf Research Institute, Persian Gulf University, Bushehr, Iran
3Stockholm Environment Institute, Stockholm, Sweden
4Shiraz University of Technology, Iran
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.6 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2022
Publish Date: 2023-05-24


The construction of large dams along rivers has significantly changed the natural flow regime, reducing the inflow into many lakes and terminal wetlands. However, the question of the impact of dam operation on downstream estuarine wetlands has less been taken into account. Spatio-temporal flow regime alteration in the Mond River shows the complexity of drivers affecting the estuary-coastal system named the Mond-Protected Area in southern Iran. To this end, we applied river impact (RI) and Indicator of hydrological alteration (IHA) methods on monthly and daily river flow data across the basin. Based on the river impact method, a “drastic” impact below two in-operation (Tangab and Salman Farsi) dams, with RI values of 0.02 and 0.08, diminish to a ‘severe’ impact with RI value of 0.35 at the last gauge (Ghantareh) on the main corridor of the Mond river due to the addition of flow from a large mid-basin (about 20,254 km²). Furthermore, the degree of hydrological alteration (daily flow analysis) at mid-stream (e.g., Dehram gauges) was similar to the unregulated upstream tributaries (e.g., Hanifaghan gauges). The remote sensing analysis in the Mond Protected Area showed the prevailing impact of sea-level rise in the Persian Gulf with the inundation of the coastal area and a shift of vegetation in a landward direction which complied with standardized precipitation index (SPI) values as a meteorological drought indicator. Thus, the consequence of climate change (e.g., sea-level rise, draught) has a higher impact on the protected area than the upstream river regulation and land-use change in the Mond basin. The holistic approach and the catchment-level study allowed us to see the complexity of the drivers influencing the estuary-coastal system.

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Series: Science of the total environment
ISSN: 0048-9697
ISSN-E: 1879-1026
ISSN-L: 0048-9697
Volume: 858
Issue: Pt 3
Article number: 160045
DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.160045
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 218 Environmental engineering
1172 Environmental sciences
Funding: This study was supported by Maa- ja vesitekniikan tuki ry (Reference Number: 41878).
Copyright information: © 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (