Hydrologic Alterations from Climate Change Inform Assessment of Ecological Risk to Pacific Salmon in Bristol Bay, Alaska
December 11, 2015
This article documents the findings of a study conducted via the development of an integrated hydrologic model of the upper Nushagak and Kvichak watersheds in the Bristol Bay region of southwestern Alaska, a region under substantial development pressure from large-scale copper mining. The researchers incorporated climate change scenarios into this model to evaluate how hydrologic regimes and stream temperatures might change in a future climate, and to summarize indicators of hydrologic alteration that are relevant to salmon habitat ecology and life history. Model simulations project substantial changes in mean winter flow, peak flow dates, and water temperature by 2100.