CECA South West Foundations Group – ICE Plymouth City Club – Human and Natural Impacts on Large Rivers in China

The ICE Plymouth City Club are hosting an event on Human and Natural Impacts on Large Rivers in China.

This will be held on Tuesday 10 March at 18:00 at the University of Plymouth’s Plymouth Lecture Theatre, PL4 8AA.

China is a country of great hydrological contrasts, too little precipitation in the north and much more rainfall in the south. Disastrous floods and droughts have occurred throughout China’s history and the over-supply of fine sediment from rapidly eroding areas such as the Loess Plateau has caused sedimentation of major rivers in China. The presentation will examine the cultural importance of rivers in China, and its long history of hydraulic engineering, before considering human and natural impacts on three of China’s largest rivers. Recent findings will be presented on changes to water and sediment fluxes in the Yellow River, Yangtze River, and the Mekong River. Important changes are due to climate change, sedimentation, sand dredging, and the construction of major dams. The challenge is how civil engineers can contribute towards China’s large rivers achieving long-term sustainability and turn China’s ‘sorrow’ into joy,

Speaker Alistair Borthwick has more than 40 years’ experience in civil engineering and is a Professor at The University of Edinburgh, an Emeritus Fellow of St Edmund Hall, Oxford, and holds Visiting Professorships at Peking, Plymouth, and Shanghai Jiao Tong Universities. In the late 1970’s, Alistair was employed by the South West Water Authority. In the early 1980’s, he worked for Brown & Root (UK) Ltd on the design of the Hutton tension leg platform which won the Queen’s Award for Technological Achievement in 1984. Alistair later became a Professor of Engineering Science at the University of Oxford, where he worked for 21 years from 1990-2011. He was Head of Civil & Environmental Engineering at University College Cork from 2011-13, where he was the Founding Director of the SFI Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy Ireland which presently employs 200 people and involves more than 50 companies. Alistair’s research interests include environmental fluid mechanics, coastal and ocean engineering, and marine renewable energy. In 2019, he was awarded the Gold Medal of the Institution of Civil Engineers for his lifetime contributions to civil engineering. Alistair grew up in South Devon, where he now lives.

If you would like to attend the presentation, please book onto the presentation event here.