What’s a Leaky River? With Dr. Ellen Wohl

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Dr. Ellen Wohl of Colorado State University joins The Water Values Podcast to discuss rivers and streams, and headwaters streams in particular. If you’ve always thought of rivers and streams as conduits to flush away whatever we put into it, this podcast will open your eyes to how rivers and streams interconnect with their surroundings and why headwater streams are so important.

Important Note: I am not taking a position on the current United States Environmental Protection Agency rulemaking concerning “waters of the United States,” but I do believe Ellen’s discussion provides important context and information that can contribute to the discussion of that rulemaking.

In this Session, You’ll Learn about:

  • What fluvial geomorphology is
  • What a fluvial geomorphologist does
  • What a headwaters river is
  • Why headwater rivers and streams are important
  • The connections of headwaters rivers and streams to the surrounding environment
  • Nutrient introduction into rivers and streams
  • The impact of logjams on headwater rivers and streams
  • Why complexity and heterogeneity are important to headwater rivers and streams
  • How human activities affect rivers and streams
  • What a “leaky river” is
  • How “leaky rivers” affect water quality
  • What nutrification is
  • The impact of nutrification
  • How complex and heterogeneous rivers and streams help retain and store nutrients

Resources and Links Mentioned in or Relevant to this Session Include:


Click here to download the Transcript for Session 7 of The Water Values Podcast

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3 thoughts on “What’s a Leaky River? With Dr. Ellen Wohl

  1. Tim Truax

    Dr. Wohl is a clear subject matter expert on rivers and watercourses. I really, really learned a lot from this podcast. Riparian corridors! A phrase I’ll never forget.

  2. Dave McGimpsey Post author

    Yes, Tim, Ellen was fantastic and so knowledgeable. She has a great way of framing the issue and explaining it in an easy-to-understand manner. Thanks for listening! Dave

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