Title: How cities shape water: The past and future of urban hydrologic change
Abstract: Re-configuration of hydrologic systems is a fundamental aspect of urban development, both through the effects of urban land on natural water bodies and through the design and construction of new aquatic features. Understanding the future of water resources and urban landscapes requires that we consider urban hydrologic change across a wide range of scales, from the physical, chemical, and biological processes that operate within the built hydrologic system to the regional and continental-scale patterns of hydrologic change. It will also require ecologists and hydrologists to grapple with conceptual frameworks that distinguish clearly between ‘natural’ and ‘artificial’ water bodies.
Bio: Dr. Jim Heffernan is an Assistant Professor in the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University. He is an ecosystem ecologist whose work addresses the causes and consequences of major change in streams, rivers, and wetlands, including the effects of land use, water management, and climatic change. Dr. Heffernan’s work focuses on how feedbacks among ecological, physical, and biogeochemical processes shape responses to these drivers, and applies a wide range of tools and theories developed for local ecosystems to better understand ecological patterns and mechanisms at regional and continental scales.