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TitleAssessing the hydrologic and environmental impacts of climate change with an integrated groundwater and surface water model
DownloadDownload (whole publication)
LicencePlease note the adoption of the Open Government Licence - Canada supersedes any previous licences.
AuthorVan Vliet, D; Bastien, J; Ghbn, N
SourceRegional-scale groundwater geoscience in southern Ontario: an Ontario Geological Survey, Geological Survey of Canada, and Conservation Ontario open house; by Russell, H A JORCID logo; Ford, D; Priebe, E H; Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 8212, 2017 p. 36, Open Access logo Open Access
PublisherNatural Resources Canada
MeetingOntario Geological Survey and Geological Survey of Canada groundwater geoscience open house; Guelph; CA; March 1-2, 2017
Documentopen file
Mediaon-line; digital
RelatedThis publication is contained in Regional-scale groundwater geoscience in southern Ontario: an Ontario Geological Survey, Geological Survey of Canada, and Conservation Ontario open house
File formatpdf
NTS30M/04; 30M/05; 40P/01; 40P/08
AreaHamilton; Spencer Creek
Lat/Long WENS -80.3333 -79.6667 43.5000 43.1667
Subjectshydrogeology; environmental geology; soils science; Nature and Environment; groundwater; aquifers; surface waters; wetlands; climate; groundwater resources; resource management; regional planning; watersheds; hydrologic environment; environmental impacts; models; water levels; soils; soil moisture; temperature; precipitation; ecosystems; flora; faunas; Spencer Creek Watershed; Climate change; adaptation; monitoring
ProgramGroundwater Geoscience Aquifer Assessment & support to mapping
Released2017 02 22
AbstractThere has been increased public awareness of the potential impacts of climate change on water resources in the Spencer Creek Watershed in Hamilton. This study, commissioned by Hamilton Conservation Authority and the City of Hamilton was completed as a pilot study to evaluate not only potential impacts to surface water hydrology, but explore how an integrated model can provide a thorough assessment on those groundwater and surface water interactions relating to environmental flows and wetlands.
The team for this project consisted of Matrix Solutions Inc., McMaster University, and the Ontario Climate Consortium (OCC). This pilot project received funding support from the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) Blue Water Project, the City of Hamilton, Hamilton Conservation Authority, and Mitacs.
1. The study goals included the following:
2. Characterize local future climates and create future climate change scenarios with which to evaluate infrastructure and environmental vulnerabilities in the Hamilton area.
3. Apply possible future climates to an integrated groundwater and surface water model of the Spencer Creek watershed.
4. Compare baseline watershed and hydrologic and hydrogeologic conditions and future conditions against multiple impact indicators to assess vulnerabilities to climate change in the Spencer Creek watershed.
5. Recommend adaptation and monitoring measures to address the risks posed to the watershed by both current and future climate scenarios.
Future projected climate changes include increases in mean annual temperature, maximum temperatures, growing degree-days, and evapotranspiration. In addition, the models predict potential increases in total annual precipitation, more days with substantial rainfall and more long duration events. All of these potential changes may affect the form and function of the environmental features in the watershed. The effect of these changes on environmental features may affect water levels and soil moisture in wetlands and warmer stream temperatures. These hydrologic changes may then result in shifts in wetland species and more habitat for invasive species. For coldwater streams, these changes could mean loss of brook trout habitat; and for forest habitats, vernal pools supporting amphibian reproduction may be lost. Warming and drying of forests may lead to shifts in vegetation and loss of rare species.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
Proceedings for Regional-Scale Groundwater Geoscience in Southern Ontario open house organized by the Ontario Geological Survey, Geological Survey of Canada and Conservation Ontario Geoscientists. Open house is on 2017-03-01 and 02. Purpose is public engagement and dissemination of geoscience completed in Southern Ontario during the past year.

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