Water Resources Management 2017
9th International Conference on Sustainable Water Resources Management
18 - 20 July, 2017
Prague, Czech Republic
The Ninth International Conference on Water Resources Management took place in Prague, the Czech Republic, organised by the Wessex Institute, sponsored by the WIT Transactions on Ecology and the Environment, and supported by the International Journal of Environmental Impacts. It was held in collaboration with the Czech Technical University.
The meeting followed the success of the series of conferences started in Halkidiki, Greece (2001), followed by Las Palmas, Gran Canaria (2003); The Algarve, Portugal (2005); Kos, Greece (2007); Malta (2009); Riverside, California (2011); New Forest , UK (2013), home of the Wessex Institute; and the previous meeting in A Coruña, Spain (2015).
Water is essential for sustaining life on our planet and its uneven distribution is a source of permanent conflict. The growth of human population combined with the irregularity in precipitation and water availability may restrict even further the access to water in certain regions of the world. This problem is made more severe by anthropogenic activities that affect its quality.
The Conference provided a platform for professionals involved in water resources management to exchange knowledge and gain an insight in to the state of the art in the current technology, techniques and solutions in sustainable water management as they have been developed and applied in different countries. Participants included a wide variety of stakeholders from research and academia, industrial sectors as well as government organisations.
The meeting offered a forum to exchange knowledge and hold productive discussions. Papers presented at the meeting, as well as those of previous conferences, are permanently archived in digital format in the Wessex Institute website at http://www.witpress.com/elibrary where they are available to the international community.
Opening of the Conference
Professor Stefano Mambretti, a member of the Board of Directors of the Wessex Institute, welcomed the delegates and explained the objectives of the WIT conference series by stressing the work of the Institute for international dissemination of knowledge.
The Conferences – Stefano said – are an important part of WIT activities which also include research in new software tools for scientists and engineers; services to industry and publication of books and journals. WIT collaborates with many institutions around the world and has helped to set up a large number of projects and networking.
The research carried out in its New Forest Campus was founded on research and consulting services for industry. The current emphasis – Stefano explained – is in the energy and aerospace industries, but the software tools developed by the Institute can be applied to solve a wide number of problems and the aim is to respond to the most pressing demands for the research to continue to evolve as industry’s requirements change.
The Institute also responds to the need for information by supporting not only the e-library containing conference papers but a growing number of international journals. The more recent is the one on Environmental Impact.
RNDr. Zuzana Boukalova from Vodní Zdroje company (Water Resources company) and Co-Chair of the conference continued by inviting the delegates to see a few sights in the Czech Republic and especially Prague, which is the historical capital of Bohemia. Nicknamed “the City of a Hundred Spires”, Prague is home to a number of famous cultural attractions, many of which survived the violence and destruction of 20th Century Europe. The city sits amid the gentle landscapes of the Bohemian plateau, straddling the Vltava River, which is the longest river in the Czech Republic. Main attractions include the Prague Castle, the Charles Bridge, the Old Town Square with the Prague astronomical clock and the Jewish Quarter. The historical centre of Prague is listed in the UNESCO World Cultural and Natural Heritage Register. It is a city of culture boasting more than ten major museums, along with numerous theatres, cinemas, and other historical exhibits.
The meeting was enhanced by a series of keynote addresses, ie
- “Historical use of nitrogen and phosphorous fertilizers in rain-fed regions and their consequential implications on water quality in the Pacific Northwest, USA”, by Robert Mahler, University of Idaho, USA.
- “Hydrologic assessment of woody biomass removal for biofuel production”, by Michael Barber, University of Utah, USA.
- “A Century of works on River Seveso: from unregulated development to the basin reclamation”, by Stefano Mambretti, Politecnico di Milano, Italy.
- “Relations between the microscale river bed morphology and the macrozoobenthos – implications for the ecological quality assessment and the definition of reference conditions” by Michael Groll, Universitat Marburg, Germany
The Waterworks at Káraný is a drinking water supplier both for the capital of Prague and the central part of the Central Bohemian Region. Káraný water works provide high-quality drinking water at a rate of approx. 1,000 l/s, which covers about 1/3 of the capital's demand.
The waterworks system is divided in two parts, both of which are dependent on the Jizera river. The older part of the system was put into operation in as early as 1913 and, at that time, was unparalleled in Europe in terms of its scope as well as technical solution. It is based on natural bank infiltration of the river water into the sandy and gravelly sediments. The infiltrated water is then pumped by a number of wells drilled along the Jizera river.
The other part of the system, constructed in the 1960s, relies on artificial groundwater recharge. The surface water from the Jizera is allowed to infiltrate into the underground formations using infiltration basins. After certain retention time underground, the water becomes clean from organic contamination and is enriched with minerals. This water is then mixed with the water obtained by bank infiltration and, after chlorination, can be supplied directly to consumers.
The guided visit was very successful and the delegates showed an interest in all parts of the system.
The conference banquet took place in the Savoy, a restaurant renowned for its Czech specialities, and was another friendly occasion. The dinner consisted of a series of typical starters, followed by the traditional Czech soup Kulajda and the main course of roasted duck. The wines were the excellent local white Pinot Gris and St. Laurent.
The meeting was closed by Stefano who thanked the delegates for having participated in yet another successful conference in Water Resources Management and hoped that they will consider attending other WIT conferences in the future.