Provenance and Transfer of Fine Sediment in the Lugg Catchment, Herefordshire, UK

Stopps, Jason P. (2018) Provenance and Transfer of Fine Sediment in the Lugg Catchment, Herefordshire, UK. PhD thesis, University of Gloucestershire.

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An extensive fine sediment research monitoring programme, funded through the SITA Trust’s ‘Enriching Nature’ programme, has been undertaken to evaluate the value of a catchment-wide, monitoring approach to establish spatial and temporal patterns and sources of fine sediment in the Herefordshire Lugg catchment. The aim of the project was to investigate the sources and patterns of fine sediment movement to help target management resources to reduce the impact of excessive siltation. Continuous (15 minute) flow and suspended sediment concentrations were monitored at five sink sites between April 2009 and November 2012 to assess the spatio-temporal variations in suspended sediment. Episodic high suspended sediment concentrations in the Lugg catchment persistently exceeded 25 mg L-1 over the period of study. Delivery of suspended sediments to the sites was also monitored using time-integrated samplers. A sediment fingerprinting and mixture modelling procedure based on geochemical properties was utilised to identify key sub-catchments that persistently delivered fine sediment over the period of study. Sources of fine sediment were also identified and evaluated based on differing land use types in four of the main sub-catchments recognised as important contributors of sediment at the catchment scale. The sediment fingerprinting technique was refined to incorporate appropriate weighting and correction factors to improve the ability of the composite fingerprint to discriminate between source types. The monitoring programme established the spatial and temporal characteristics of fine in-channel sediment and its sources within the wider catchment. Priority sub-catchment areas that posed the greatest risk of being fine sediment pollution sources were identified as the Cheaton Brook, Curl Brook, Ridgemoor Brook and Moor Brook. The sub-catchment scale sourcing results indicate that if siltation problems in the Lugg catchment are to be tackled effectively, catchment managers should target the reduction of fine sediment from farm track surfaces in the Cheaton, Curl and Moor Brook sub-catchments, while targeting the reduction of sediment mobilised from arable and pasture surfaces in the Ridgemoor Brook sub-catchment. This study has therefore assisted in strengthening the evidence of the sediment problem in the Herefordshire Lugg catchment and has provided an evidence base to aid catchment management to enable the implementation of mitigation measures in an effective targeted approach.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Advisors:
Thesis AdvisorEmailURL
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Q Science > QE Geology
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Education and Science
Depositing User: Susan Turner
Date Deposited: 22 Feb 2019 13:59
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2023 08:58

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