Recent changes to the Lower Mississippi embanked floodplain

Authors: Paul Hudson*, Leiden University, Edward Van der Hout, Leiden University , Madelief Verdaasdonk, Utrecht University
Topics: Geomorphology, Physical Geography, Water Resources and Hydrology
Keywords: Lower Mississippi, floodplain management, Fluvial geomorphology
Session Type: Poster
Day: 4/12/2018
Start / End Time: 1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Room: Napoleon Foyer/Common St. Corridor, Sheraton, 3rd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The Lower Mississippi is one of Earth’s most intensely engineered large rivers. While much research has examined the adjustment to the channel, much less research has examined the floodplain. In this study we utilize a combination of historical, geospatial, and field data to characterize a variety of changes to the floodplain since embankment, including changes to the flood pulse hydrology, as well as the floodplain morphology and sedimentology. Analysis of LiDAR DEM enables the quantification of the volume of channel islands, which have significantly increased in frequency since the mid 1960s. Additionally, the morphology of natural levees vary significantly between different island types. The study results provide a context for future environmental management of the floodplain ecology.

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