Reservoir Sediments Dredging Panel set for August 14

Western Dredging Association’s (WEDA) Education Commission Reservoir Sediments Dredging Panel is set to take place on Friday August 14, 2020 at 1 PM EST.

This panel will discuss the current state of reservoir sedimentation in the United States, estimated reservoir capacity losses, flooding impacts due to the loss capacity, dredging practices to reduce reservoir sedimentation, current research efforts by the USACE, environmental benefits and steps to secure permits for reservoir dredging, and Reclamation and USACE research prize competition for reservoir sediment removal. 

Reservoir Sediment Dredging panelist:

  • Dr. Greg Morris, Reservoir Sediment Expert
  • Dr. John Shelley, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Dr. Tim Randall, Bureau of Reclamation
  • Michael Whelan, Anchor QEA, LLC
  • David Olson, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 
  • Stanley Ekren, Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Co.

Panel Presentations/Discussions: 

  • Panel Moderator/Introductions: Michael Whelan (5 minutes)
  • NRSST Perspective: Greg Morris (20 minutes)
    • Statement of reservoir sedimentation problem and why it is important.
    • Annual reservoir dredging is needed to achieve sustainable storage capacity for reservoirs that cannot use reservoir water for sediment management.
  • USACE Reservoir Research:  John Shelly (20 minutes)
    • Focus on delivering sediment to downstream channel and the environmental benefits and other considerations.
  • Dredging practice: Michael Whelan (20 minutes)
    • Discuss how reservoir dredging is different than navigational dredging (e.g., annual operation, only dredge certain areas of the reservoir, fluctuating reservoir levels, deliver sediment past the dam to downstream channel).
  • Regulatory: David Olson (20 minutes)
    • Address how a permit can be obtained to continually dredge reservoir sediment.
  • Research Prize Competition for Reservoir Sediment Removal: Tim Randle (10 minutes)
    • Reclamation and USACE seek new or improved techniques for reservoir sediment removal in a cost-effective manner that still preserves and sustains the operational objectives of reservoirs.
    • New or improved techniques may include reducing energy cost, improved efficiency of sediment collection, reducing the number of people required to operate and maintain the equipment, improved durability of equipment to operate over many months in variable environmental conditions, increased capabilities to remove sediment from water depths greater than 50 ft.
  • Questions – 20 to 25 minutes

Photo: USACE