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Assessment and mitigation options of blackwater risk in the River Murray system

Flooding contributes to major improvements in the long-term health of the Murray–Darling Basin and dissolved organic carbon-rich water (blackwater) can result via natural processes. Carbon enters the food web, increasing the zooplankton, which in turn act as food sources for fish. However, if dissolved oxygen is consumed faster than it is resupplied, hypoxic blackwater (low to no dissolved oxygen) can result.

This report synthesises and provides a comprehensive overview of relevant literature and data, and provides recommendations for flow management to minimize the risk of future blackwater events based on historical observations, new field data and scenario modelling.
 

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Assessment and mitigation options of blackwater risk in the River Murray system