Comprehensive Benefits Evaluation for Nature-Based Solutions

The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Engineering With Nature® Program works to better integrate traditional and nature-based infrastructure approaches by aligning engineering and natural processes. Challenge Current practice in benefit-cost analysis (BCA) is ‘tuned’ for evaluating the economic (dollar value) of costs and benefits produced by traditional, ‘hard’ infrastructure projects. However, the science and […]

Equitably Incorporating the Wellbeing Benefits of Nature

A process to incorporate the benefits of nature for human wellbeing will help USACE achieve more comprehensive benefits accounting and therefore more informed project evaluation. Ideally this work, in combination with related work units, will continue to increase the EWN-centric portfolio and will support important shifts in public infrastructure planning currently underway in the nation […]

Natural Infrastructure Opportunities Tool (NIOT) Case Study Development, User-Base Expansion and Updates

The Natural Infrastructure Opportunities Tool (NIOT) is a public facing, web-based decision support tool that allows users to explore data relevant to Natural Infrastructure (NI) projects, as well as view or add NI resource or project needs. The tool includes national and regional datasets and can be adapted for regional use or fine-tuned for local […]

Reservoir Sedimentation and Sustainability with NNBF

Shoreline erosion and reservoir sedimentation is a major issue within reservoirs and lakes, and there are no existing guidelines available to establish priorities to treat excessive shoreline erosion. Sedimentation negatively affects reservoir and lake storage capacity, water quality, recreational activities, and fisheries. This project will develop, test and monitor NNBF projects to provide new and […]

Post Wildfire Watershed Restoration for Flood Risk Management (FRM)

Wildfires can cause extreme loss of vegetation and soil instabilities that make affected areas highly susceptible to increased runoff, flooding, and transport of debris, and reduced quality of aquatic and terrestrial habitat and water quality. Managing wildfire recovery efforts by applying EWN principles has the potential to provide a wide range of flood risk management […]

Identifying Best Practices for Financing Natural Infrastructure Projects: Insights for the Engineering with Nature® Initiative

There is currently a lack of information on how to fund or finance natural infrastructure (NI). As NI continues to be mainstreamed, project leads will require innovative financing practices to account for the different lifecycle costs associated with NI projects. This project seeks to identify, evaluate, and share examples of NI projects that have secured […]

Comprehensive Framework for Incorporating Remote Sensing Methodologies into Engineering With Nature Design and Application

Remote sensing is a technology that allows for the observation of physical attributes of the earth using sensing devices such as cameras or infrared sensors from remote devices like satellites, drones, or aircraft. This research project will help improve the understanding and integration of remote sensing approaches to quantify environmental benefits of EWN® projects. Remote […]

Promoting Sustainability of Sensitive SAV Habitats with Innovative Dredging and Placement Practices

Submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) habitats provide a variety of important ecosystem services, including fish habitat, nutrient sequestration, and protection from currents and waves. Some research suggests that open-water sediment placement of dredge material harms SAV habitats in the short-term, while other research suggests long term protective benefits that results in an increased and denser area […]

Environmental Pool Management: An EWN Innovation for Advancing USACE Water Operations Practice

The practice of managing reservoir and navigation pools to increase wetland habitat value while maintaining safe navigation and managing flood risk is referred to as Environmental Pool Management (EPM). EPM can be a cost-effective way to increase ecosystem goods and service (EGS) benefits in lake and reservoir systems. But water quality benefits from EPM best […]

Developing and Optimizing Multi-Dimensional NNBF and EWN Strategies that Endure Cold Region Environments

Cold Region (CR) environments experience unique environmental stressors such as loss of permafrost and ice sheets from climate change, sea-level rise, intense ice and snowstorms, high winds, and rising/falling lake levels. These unique conditions often complicate the development of lasting EWN® solutions that improve Cold Region resilience.  This project aims to identify and develop new […]