Managing Sediment Accumulation in Lakes and Reservoirs: Challenges and Solutions for Colorado and Across the U.S.
Michael Whelan, P.E. – Anchor QEA,
Douglas Raitt – Denver Water
and Tim Randle – Retired, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
Tuesday, November 9, 2021, 11:45am-1pm
CEMS has received one (1) general CLE credit for this presentation
Registration: Webinar details and links below
Reservoirs are essential for maintaining a reliable system of water supply, while providing additional benefits such as hydropower, flood protection, recreation, and habitat. Most were constructed by the construction of dams decades ago, which trap sediment instead of allowing it to continue downstream.
The results of this process include reduced water storage capacity and lessened flood protections, and degradation of the downstream riverbed, dam infrastructure, navigation depths, shoreline recreational facilities, and habitat areas. Each has problematic repercussions on established water supply and flood control obligations, and while multiple measures exist for sediment removal, each faces significant cost drivers and numerous environmental regulations applicable both to the sediment removal process and to the placement location(s) or re-use of the material after removal.
This presentation will provide a brief overview of how the challenges of reservoir sediment management are being faced in Colorado and at a national level. National collaborations of experts, regulators, and researchers are underway, led in part by the Bureau of Reclamation, who is also sponsoring a series of innovation award challenges focused on reservoir sediment management.
The presentation will also review permit processes, environmental regulations, and grant programs applicable to water providers who are considering sediment removal efforts.
Michael Whelan, P.E., Anchor QEA, Lakewood, Colorado
Michael Whelan is a principal engineer based out of Anchor QEA’s Denver-area office. After obtaining engineering degrees from Colorado School of Mines, Georgia Tech, and MIT, Michael has 25 years of experience in the fields of environmental, geotechnical, and civil engineering applied to sites in Colorado, the western U.S., and internationally. Many of his involvements have focused on design and construction management for sediment removal, lake and shoreline development, habitat improvement, and environmental remediation; along with navigating their often complex environmental, community, and regulatory realities.
Michael has acted as a primary contributing expert, author, and presenter for national and international reservoir dredging organizations, including the National Reservoir Sedimentation and Sustainability Team (NRSST) and the World Dredging Association’s Working Group on Reservoir Sedimentation and Dredging. He also led Anchor QEA’s development of a Cost Model for Reservoir Dredging, most recently published in 2019, and currently being updated.
Douglas Raitt, Denver Water
Douglas Raitt (Doug) is an Engineering Manager with Denver Water where he has worked for the last 12 years. He manages construction of heavy civil capital projects for the collection, treatment, and transmission systems. Doug has over 35 years of experience in construction and is currently involved in design development and pre-construction planning of the Gross Reservoir Expansion project, a 471 ft tall Roller Compacted Concrete raise of an existing dam in Colorado.
Doug is a graduate of Oregon State University with a BS in Civil Engineering and earned his Master of Business Administration in Finance from the University of Chicago. Doug has given numerous presentations about his experience with hydraulic dredging of reservoirs and has joined the National Reservoir Sedimentation and Sustainability Team (NRSST). He continues to study the effects of wildfires on drinking water sources and the methods to economically control sedimentation of water supply reservoirs.
Timothy J. Randle, Ph.D., P.E., D.WRE., Retired, Bureau of Reclamation
Tim Randle was formerly a Supervisory Hydraulic Engineer and Manager of the Bureau of Reclamation’s Sedimentation and River Hydraulics Group. He received his B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of Utah and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Civil Engineer from the University of Colorado.
Tim Randle is a registered professional engineer and is an active member in the U.S. Society on Dams, American Society of Civil Engineers, and a Diplomate, Water Resources Engineer for the American Academy of Water Resources Engineers. He presently chairs the National Reservoir Sedimentation and Sustainability Team, serves on SEDHYD Board of Directors and SEDHYD Sedimentation Committee.
Tim Randle retired from Reclamation after 40 years of service. He developed several computer models and studied many rivers throughout the western United States. He led an EIS for the reoperations of Glen Canyon Dam to deliver water, generate power, and improve environmental conditions in Grand Canyon. He provided sediment management expertise for the Elwha River Restoration Project. He was Reclamation’s “Engineer of the Year” in 1997 and named one of the top ten Federal Engineers by the National Society of Professional Engineers. He received the Distinguished Service Award from the U.S. Department of the Interior in 2016.
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