Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2016ND306B

Impacts of Climate Change on Embankment Dams in the Upper Midwest Region: Critical Design Parameters and Adaptation Measures

Institute: North Dakota
Year Established: 2016 Start Date: 2016-03-01 End Date: 2017-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $4,200 Total Non-Federal Funds: $8,400

Principal Investigators: Yeo Lim

Abstract: Dams are the most important component of water resource systems found in many places. Water is stored and regulated by dams such that the development objectives of water supply, agriculture, manufacturing industry, energy generation, and other sectors, are met. The impacts of climate change on the water resources distribution has been projected as one of the major problems. However, the adaptations to the change still lack in many critical infrastructural systems. Embankment dams are very common in the U.S., hence a large number of these dams will be affected, should there be a change in the climate regime. The proposed research will answer the following questions: (1) How would the dams perform under a possible new climate regime? (2) To what extent is the safety of the dams being compromised under the new hydrologic regimes? (3) How the induced changes in the sedimentation rate in the basin may influence the operation of dams in return to the dam safety issue?