A new proposal has been developed in this research program which addresses holistically the problems of sediment management and water quality. This proposal is, in summary, a small dam, called pre-reservoir with the following characteristics:.
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The cost of this proposal is very low compared to the benefit achieved. In particular, the design of a pre-reservoir as a pilot project for the Evretou Dam was carried out. Collect, select and transport suitable sediments from the reservoirs to the beach. Koronida Research and Development Centre Ltd tel Fax e-mail: toumazis koronida.
Pre-Reservoir Proposal. If their quality is not acceptable, then suitable measures are taken e. Different options to mobilise the sediment stored into the Riba-Roja reservoir e. This method consists in partially or totally emptying the reservoir in order to erode the stored sediments, and evacuate them through the bottom outlets by using the water column pressure in the first case or by temporally restoring the water flow through the reservoir bed in the second case 1.
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The application of this method in the Ebro River is focused on the removal of the sediment stored in the Riba-Roja reservoir by: 1 emptying of the Riba-Roja dam. At this stage, sediment located close to the dam bottom out-level outlets can partially be removed by using the water column pressure; 2 generation of discharges from Mequinensa reservoir. Sediment stored into Riba-Roja dam should be remobilised by water erosion; 3 closure of Riba-Roja bottom outlets and refilling of the reservoir.
Prior to flushing operations, a detailed analysis of the required operations of the reservoir system, and the associated economic costs i. Once the sediment is transferred downstream of the reservoirs and transported by the river, it has to be deposited in the appropriate areas of the delta.
Restoring sediment fluxes downstream of large dams: The case of the Lower Ebro River
The transport and deposition of sand to the mouth area and silt to the delta front can be achieved without technical intervention. However, some human intervention is needed to deliver part of the sediment transported from the river to the delta plain.
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This could be achieved by means of using the two irrigation canals that are diverting part of the water and sediment transported by the river through the delta plain. This system was designed at the end of the 19 th century and is widely used by local farmers to transform the natural wetlands into rice fields by increasing land elevation with fertile sediments. This practice continued until the construction of the Mequinensa and Riba-roja dams 7, 9.
Sedimentation of Reservoirs
When considering the whole delta excluding beaches it has been estimated that about 1. Vertical accretion can be also increased by means of stimulating wetland plant productivity and organic soil formation 12, 13 , and this alternative is being evaluated as a complementary measure to compensate relative sea level rise.
Overall, the sustainability of the lower Ebro River and its delta could only be guaranteed by the implementation of a new reservoir management concept with the allocation of an appropriate liquid and solid flow regime. Meanwhile, discharges released from reservoirs are designed as a function of hydropower production and water demand i.
Furthermore, alternatives to the SedMa plan have not been yet evaluated. Doctor in Geography University of Barcelona,