Sustainability Considerations in the Design of Big Dams ...

Sustainability Considerations in the Design of Big Dams ...

Sustainability Considerations in the Design of Big Dams: Merowe, Nile Basin Mentor: Prof. El Fatih Eltahir Group: Anthony Paris, Teresa Yamana, Suzanne Young Outline Introduction and motivation Nile hydrology The model Climate Sedimentation Public health

Difficulties and lessons learned Conclusions Goals and Motivation Simulate the role of environmental engineers in large scale projects Analyze the effect the Dam will have on the environment and local population, and make recommendations to mitigate effects Assess whether long-term effects will significantly decrease Dams lifetime and plan accordingly

Introduction Sudan needs Energy Merowe Dam

19-year old Civil War Frequent power blackouts Utilizing Hydropower Dam Design Details Ten turbines 1,250 MW Capacity Length: 10 km Height: 65 m

Reservoir Length: 170 km General Layout Average Longterm Monthly Nile flows, 1872-1986 25 Discharge (km^3/month) 20 15 10

5 0 January February March April May

June July August September October November December Nile discharge, 1872-1986

130 120 Longterm annual average = 88.1 km^3/year Annual discharge (km^3/year) 110 100 90 80

70 60 50 40 1870 1880 1890

1900 1910 1920 1930 1940 1950 1960

1970 1980 Storage to Elevation Relationship Reserv oir Characteristics 350 340 E le v a t io n ( m ) 330

320 310 300 290 280 270 260 0

1E+09 2E+09 3E+09 4E+09 5E+09 6E+09 7E+09

Sur face Ar e a ( m ^2) Re servoir Characteristics 350 340 E le v a t io n ( m ) 330 320

310 300 290 280 270 260 0 2E+10

4E+10 6E+10 8E+10 Storage (m^3) 1E+11 1.2E+11 1.4E+11

The Model The Effect of Climate Change on Dam Performance Suzanne Young Climate How do changes in river flow caused by climate change affect the Merowe Dams power capacity? The Big Picture

Documented changes in chemical composition of atmosphere (e.g. CO2 is rising) Scientists predict if this activity continues, it will impact the environment Lots of studies on climate change and global warming done by governments in U.S., Europe Models agree global temperatures will rise, less certain about regional impacts (precipitation)

We dont know what is going to happen to Nile flows! Range of discharges for major points along the Nile (Summary of Yates 1998b results) Two numbers on ends of each line represent extreme discharges of six GCM scenarios, whereas boxed number is historic average; Additional tick marks on each line are remaining GCM scenarios, which indicate range of climate change induced flows of Nile Basin. TO DO Show different results of studies, and convince audience that we dont know

what will happen = document uncertainty! Calculate hydropower under different scenarios of climate change: Last 100 years Wetter climate Drier climate Make recommendations to dam design Potential Hydropower

Power = QhQh Qh = gg = density of water = 1000 [kg/m3] g = gravity = 9.8 [m/s2] Q = flow at dam [m3/s] h = drop in head between intake to powerhouse and outlet to river [m] Sedimentation into the Reservoir Anthony Paris Erosion: Sources of Nile Sediments

Ethiopian Highlands (~90%) Travels through the Blue Nile and Atbara The sediment load is most significant during flood season (July-Oct.) ~140 million tones per

year Transportation Suspended Load Distribution:

particulates that travel while suspended in the water column 30% Clay (<0.002 mm) 40% Silt (0.002-0.02 mm) 30% Fine Sand (0.02-0.2 mm) High level of total suspension

Reservoir Deposition I When river flow enters a reservoir, its velocity and transport capacity is reduced and its sediment load is deposited. The depositional pattern usually starts with

coarser material depositing first followed by the fine creating a delta. Factors Detention Time Shape of reservoir Operating procedures Reservoir Deposition II

Hand Calculations Calculating QS (Flow of Sediments) from Q (Flow) Find Hydrograph with corresponding Sediment Load Concentrations Convert Load from concentration (mg/L)to volume (m3)

Do linear regression to determine correlation between QS and Q; breaking the hydrograph into two sections, monsoon, and non-monsoon. Extrapolate over 100 year monthly data set to have QS Hand Calculations Calculating Trapping Efficiency 1st Round Brunes Curve

C = Capacity I = Inflow C T I The Effect of the Dam on Public Health Teresa Yamana Dams Threat to Public Health Stagnant water in reservoirs and irrigation ditches provide habitat for vectors

Constant supply of water - Dry season no longer limits vectors Merowe Dam expected to increase incidence of Malaria, Schistosomiasis, River Blindness and Rift Valley Fever Malaria Transmission

Protozoa Plasmodium transmitted by Anopheles mosquitoes Causes 1 million deaths per year Fever-like symptoms A. funestus breeds in illuminated shoreline throughout the year A. gambiae breeds in reservoir drawdown area in dry season (November June) Drawdown Area: 2.46 x 108 m3

Drawdown Area: 2.46 x 108 m3 Recommendations Malaria Whenever possible, relocate communities outside of mosquito flight range River Blindness Stop flow over spillways for two days every two weeks over wet season to inhibit blackfly breeding More to come (hopefully) Difficulties TOO BROAD

Model is stupid Conflicting expectations Conclusions ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

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