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Georgias Rivers Doug Oetter and Chris Skelton Dept. of History and Geography Dept. of Biology and Environmental Science Georgia College & State University.

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Presentation on theme: "Georgias Rivers Doug Oetter and Chris Skelton Dept. of History and Geography Dept. of Biology and Environmental Science Georgia College & State University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Georgias Rivers Doug Oetter and Chris Skelton Dept. of History and Geography Dept. of Biology and Environmental Science Georgia College & State University

2 Georgias Physiographic Provinces Cumberland Plateau Blue Ridge Ridge and Valley Piedmont Coastal Plain

3 Georgias Watersheds River headwaters in higher elevations Flow Southeast and Southwest to Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico

4 Blue Ridge Constrained channels underlain by bedrock Generally clear and cool flow from forested watersheds High energy but with low flow due to smaller catchment basin Waterfalls

5 Ridge and Valley Ranging from clear to colored, depending on watershed conditions and human activities Moderate flood potential Highly variable flow

6 Piedmont Constrained channels over bedrock Water discolored by sediments from mining, construction, and agriculture Moderate energy with increasing flood potential due to large catchments Shoals and rapids Hydropower potential

7 Coastal Plain Unconstrained channels meandering over deep sediments Ranging from highly colored by sediments to clear and blackwater rivers tinted with tannic acid Very large flows with broad flood plains Estuaries

8 Georgias Main Rivers Altamaha Yamassee Indian chief Altamaha, named by DeSoto in 1540 Chattahoochee Creek for flowered stones Coosa Cherokee name for the Upper Creeks of the region Flint Thronateeska, flint-picking-up- place Ochlockonee Hitchiti for yellow water Ocmulgee Creek for bubbling water Oconee From Oconee Old Town Ogeechee River of the Uchees, a sub-tribe of the Creek Confederation St. Marys Spanish mission Santa Maria de Guadeloupe, founded in 1568 Satilla Once named Riviere Somme; renamed St. Illa by a Spanish explorer of the same name Savannah River of the Shawnees Suwannee Creek word suwani, or echo Tallapoosa Unknown Creek word, possibly from Choctaw for crushed rock Tennessee Cherokee place name

9 Average Flows

10 Name Longterm flow (ft3/s) ALTAMAHA RIVER AT DOCTORTOWN, GA23,000 SAVANNAH RIVER NEAR CLYO, GA14,700 FLINT RIVER AT BAINBRIDGE, GA13,500 CHATTAHOOCHEE RIVER NEAR COLUMBIA, AL13,400 SAVANNAH RIVER AT AUGUSTA, GA11,150 COOSA RIVER NEAR ROME, GA9,355 FLINT RIVER AT ALBANY, GA9,020 OCMULGEE RIVER AT LUMBER CITY, GA8,795 OCONEE RIVER AT DUBLIN, GA6,600 OCONEE RIVER AT MILLEDGEVILLE, GA4,030 OCMULGEE RIVER AT MACON, GA3,860 OGEECHEE RIVER NEAR EDEN, GA3,520 SATILLA RIVER AT ATKINSON, GA2,780 CHATTAHOOCHEE RIVER AT ATLANTA, GA2,740 OHOOPEE RIVER NEAR REIDSVILLE, GA1,820 CHATTAHOOCHEE RIVER AT BUFORD DAM, NEAR BUFORD, GA1,620

11 Outline History of Georgias Rivers Native uses Early commerce Steamboat era Flooding River decline Dam-building period River resurgence

12 Native American Uses Drinking water Food Transportation Settlement –Fall Line communities –Resources of both Coastal Plain and Piedmont

13 Early Commerce Exploration Trading Minerals Timber extraction Hydropower (grist and lumber mills)

14 Steamboat Era Begun in late 1820s –Rivers developed for commerce Grain Lumber Manufactured goods Cotton Continued until late 1930s –Displaced by road transportation

15 Flood Damage Severe flooding aggravated by sediment accumulation in river channel from massive soil erosion

16 River Decline Sedimentation Untreated sewage –Phosphates and municipal waste –Nitrates –Industrial pollutants Removal of riparian vegetation

17 Dams and Reservoirs U. S. Army Corps of Engineers Reservoirs –Allatoona Lake –Carters Lake –J. Strom Thurmond Lake –George W. Andrews Lake –Hartwell Lake –Richard B. Russell Lake –Lake Seminole –Lake Sidney Lanier –Walter F. George Lake –West Point Lake Powerplant cooling reservoirs Other small dams

18 Resurgence of Georgias Rivers Clean Water Act –Pollution control –Sewage treatment Recreation and Wildlife Values Riverfront Redevelopment

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