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Tamrakar

Tamrakar

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Published by: Central Department of Geology on Oct 29, 2010
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Bulletin of the Department of Geology, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal, Vol. 13, 2010, pp. 13–22
River bio-engineering solution for protecting banks andrehabilitating stream function; models for Bishnumati River,Kathmandu
 Naresh Kazi Tamrakar 
Central Department of Geology, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal 
ABSTRACT
*Corresponding author:E-mail address: ntamrakar@hotmail.com
Bulletin of the Department of Geology
INTRODUCTION
Rivers of urban area like Kathmandu aredeteriorating day by day not only because of natural phenomena, but also because of significantdisturbances caused by human beings (Tamrakar,2004a and 2004b; Bajracharya and Tamrakar, 2007;Shrestha and Tamrakar, 2007). To retard the currenttrent of deterioration, workplans should beimplemented to rehabilitate rivers of Kathmandu.Recognition of river dynamics is the crucial step before any rehabilitation works are undertaken.River bio-engineering (also called soil bio-engineering) is the best way to reestablish riparianvegetation in highly disturbed urban rivers like theBagmati River and its tributaries. The present studyintroduces some models and techniques of river bio-engineering, which are suitable for rivers of Kathmandu, and are particularly proposed for theBishnumati River as an example study.
BISHNUMATI RIVER BASIN
The Bishnumati River basin is bounded betweenlattitude 27
o
41’30” N and 27
o
48’30” N, andlongitude 85
o
14’ 00” E and 85
o
22’30” E, and is oneof the major sub-basins of the Bagmati River. Thesummit of the Shivapuri Range (2300 m) forms thehighest altitude of the basin whereas the river flood plain with elevation 1280 m is the lowest region.The northern and western regions forming mountainranges border the Bishnumati River basin and formhigh relief areas with steeper slopes compared tocentral and eastern regions which are characterized by flat and wide older terraces and flood plains.The Bishnumati River originates from the NWof the Kathmandu valley and flows towards southcontributing the Bagmati River at Teku area (Fig.2). Drainage areas, which contribute third, forth,fifth and sixth order segments of the BishnumatiRiver are respectively, 5.09, 10.78, 18.33, and 67.89km
2
. The total drainage area of the basin is 102.09km
2
. The overall drainage pattern in the Bishnumatiriver basin is dendritic.
C     
e     
n   
t     
r    
a   
l    
D  
e  
 p 
m
e
 n
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Rivers of Kathmandu are deteriorating progressively and are losing natural functions. Rehabilitation of these rivers is requiredimmediately. Recognition of river dynamics is the principal step before implementing rehabilitation works. River bio-engineeringis the most appropriate way not only to establish riparian buffer zone but also to stabilise river banks from erosion and failure.The Bishnumati River, one of the major tributaries of the Bagmati River in Kathmandu was studied. Six bio-engineering modelsand various techniques in each of the models have been suggested to rehabilitate the functions of the river. These models areenvironmental friendly using local resources of natural gravels, bamboos, and plant cuttings, and incorporating minimum structuralworks. If properly implemented, the bio-engineering methods will be fruitful in improving river habitat as well as the recreationalfunction.
 
14
 N. K. Tamrakar/ Bulletin of the Department of Geology, Vol. 13, 2010, pp. 13–22
Hydro-meteorology
Monthly discharge recorded during 1969-1985in Budhanilkantha station (DHM, 1998), locatedeast of the Bishnumatigau in the northern part of the Bishnumati watershed, was analysed. Theextreme maximum discharge varied between 1.040and 3.400 m
3
/s. The extreme min. dischargeremained below 0.028 m
3
/s. A lean flow occurs inDecember, January and February, whereas highflows occur in July, August and September (Fig. 3).The record of extreme max. discharge exhibits thatthe least discharge occurs in February and the greatestdischarge occurs in August.The maximum and the minimum averagerainfalls occured respectively in July (559 mm) andin November (8.65 mm) (Fig. 4). Generally, June,July and August are the periods which experiencehigh rainfall. November, December and Januaryexperience low rainfall.
EXISTING CONDITION OF RIVER 
The Bishnumati River is a sixth order stream,which has a total length of 18.4 km of which, firstto sixth order stream stretches have lengths of 0.19km, 0.90 km, 2.27 km, 7.95 km, 0.89 km and 6.17km, respectively. The mainstem river is sinuouswith sinuosity varying from 1.15 to 1.34. Existingconditions of the third to sixth order stream stretcheswere evaluated by Tamrakar (2004a) and Adhikaryand Tamrakar (2007), and are briefly accounted.
 N
012 Km27o47’ 30”27o45’ 00”27o42’ 30”85o17’ 30”85o20’ 00”85o15’ 00”85o22’ 30”
    B    i
  s
    h
  n
   u   m
  a   t   i 
    R    i   v  e   r
M     
a     h      
a           d               e           v           
K     
h       
 o
 l             
 a
     S
    a
     n      l
    a       K      h    o      l    a
M  
a  n  
m  
a  
t     
i    
l  i  
LEGENDWatershed  boundarySubwatershed  boundaryStudy segment
Okhaltar
Third order stretchFifth order stretch
Tamsipakha
Fig. 2 The Bishnumati River basin showing major drainagesand order of stream stretches along the river corridor; minor drainages are omitted for clearity
Bishnumatigau
Forth order stretch
Mahadevtar
Sixth order stretch
   B
  a  g   m
   a
      t
            i
     R
          i
      v
     e
     r
024 Km
N
85
o
15’85
o
30’
   2   7
  o
   4   5   ’
85
o
30’
Shivapuri Range
KATHMANDU
   2   7
  o
   3   5   ’
 o 
 3  5 ’  
 o 
 5 ’  
Nallu
Phulchoki
Lele
Fig. 1 A map showing the Bishnumati watershed
 N   a  
l    
l    
 
 K 
h
      B
       i
   s
   h
  n
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  m
  a
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   i 
   R   i  v  e
   r
Kathmandu
I  N  D  I  
N  E  P   A 
CHINA
80302686
Fig. 3 Monthly average mean, extreme maximum and extrememinimum discharges during 1969-1985
0.0000.5001.0001.5002.0002.5003.0003.5004.000
Month
   D   i  s  c   h  a  r  g  e   (  m
   3
   /  s   )
 Average mean dischargeExtreme maxdischargeExtreme minimumdischarge
   F  e   b   J  a  n   M  a  r   F  e   b   M  a  r   J  u  n   J  u   l   A  u  g   S  e  p   O  c   t   N  e  v   D  e  c
Fig. 4 Average total monthly rainfall in Budhanilkantha stationduring 1987–2003
0200400600800
   J  a  n   F  e   b   M  a  r   A  p  r   M  a  y   J  u  n   J  u   l   A  u  g   S  e  p   O  c   t   N  o  v   D  e  c
Month
   R  a   i  n   f  a   l   l ,  m  m
 
15
 River bio-engineering solution for protecting banks and rehabilitating stream function; models forBishnumati River, Kathmandu
Third order stream
The third order stream is a low sinuosity stretch(K = 1.15) with mean meander wavelength ratio(MLR) of 12.2–83.5 and mean meander belt widthratio (MWR) of 29.6 (Table 1). The mean depth at bankfull is 0.58 m. The entrenchment ratio (ER)varies from 1.17 to 1.38, whereas width/depth ratio(W/D ratio) varies from 7.27 to 15.2. The bank height ratio (BHR) ranges from 1.33 to 3.33. Themaximum depth ratio (MDR) varies from 1.32 to2.17. The slope of the channel is 0.133 m/m.The third order stream is considerably entrenchedwith relatively low W/D ratio, which is about half of that of the fifth order and sixth order streams.Sinuosity is also low compared to other streamstretches. The substrate is composed of pebbles tohuge mega boulders along with mixture of sand.The representative third order stream stretch exhibitsA4-type stream (Table 2) according to theclassification of Rosgen (1994).The third order stream has few point bars andside bars of sand and gravel. Streambanks are mostlycovered with megaboulders as armours (Fig. 5).Riparian vegetation is continuous to some extentand is relatively in good condition compared to theother downstream stream stretches. The streambanksare lined up with mostly shrubs and grass, and fewtrees. Some banks are steep with high bank height,and scanty armour of boulders (Fig. 5). The streamis vertically unstable due to high entrenchment (<1.4)and highly unstable BHR (>1.5), and therefore poseshigh risk of degradation. MWR is moderate and bank erosion hazard index (BEHI) is also moderate(29.6). W/D ratio is considerably larger showingmoderate lateral instability of the stream.
Forth order stream
The forth order stream is a sinuous stretch (K =1.34) with MLR of 31.3 and MWR of 70.4 (Table1). The bankfull cross-sectional area and the meandepth at bankfull are 4.89 square metres and 0.64m, respectively. ER varies from 2.29 to 12.2 whileW/D ratio varies from 8.09 to 20.3. BHR and MDR are 1.67–2.11 and 1.20–2.01, respectively. The slopeof the channel is 0.008 m/m.The forth order stream stretch is the leastentrenched stretch (4.78). It has W/D ratio greater than 12 and sinuosity of 1.34. These parameters arelesser than thoese required for an E-type stream.The stretch possesses low slope angle (0.008 m/m)and contains pebble sized sediments. The forth order 
Table 1: Morphological data from segments of the Bishnumati River 
Morphological dataThird order stretchForth order stretchFifth order stretchSixth order stretchminmaxmeanminmaxmeanminmaxmeanminmaxmean
Riffle cross-section:
Bankfull x-section area, A
 bkf 
(m
2
)2.204.753.523.596.534.895.288.557.373.2610.76.98Width at bankfull, W
 bkf 
(m)4.007.706.085.5011.507.678.8015.713.86.415.3010.9Width flood prone area, W
fpa
(m)5.509.007.6812.677.836.811.722.619.19.716.5013.1Max. depth bankfull, D
max
(m)0.900.950.980.870.900.890.900.900.900.800.850.83Max depth top of low bank, D
TOB
(m)1.263.102.441.471.901.601.503.602.202.103.052.58Mean depth at bankfull, D
 bkf 
=A
 bkf 
/W
 bkf 
(m)0.510.720.580.560.750.640.460.600.540.510.510.51Entrenchment ratio, ER= W
fpa
/W
 bkf 
1.171.381.282.2912.24.781.331.451.371.081.521.30Width-depth ratio, W/D= W
 bkf 
/D
 bkf 
7.2715.210.78.0920.312.214.733.926.212.630.021.3Bank height ratio, BHR=D
TOB
/D
max
1.333.332.531.672.111.791.674.002.442.633.593.11Max. depth ratio, D
max
/D
 bkf 
1.322.171.721.202.011.411.501.941.680.201.670.93
Pool cross-section:
Pool area ratio = A
 pool
/A
 bkf 
0.681.240.850.601.721.010.540.760.640.880.990.94Pool width ratio = W
 pool
/W
 bkf 
0.510.890.780.761.250.930.320.720.521.080.910.99Pool max depth ratio = D
 pool
/D
 bkf 
1.551.901.641.201.661.622.042.592.271.561.571.57
Pattern survey:
Meander wavelength, L
m
(m)70.04801672408501002302402353401950998Radius of curvature, R (m)c10.010629.015.050789.036.372.551.475.0975465.0Meander wavelength ratio, MLR= L
m
/W
 bkf 
12.283.529.013.011131.316.617.417.031.318092.0Radius of curvature ratio, R c/W
 bkf 
1.7418.45.042.066.111.612.625.243.726.989.942.9Belt width, W
 blt
(m)170540160800Meander width ratio = W
 blt
/W
 bkf 
29.670.411.673.7Sinuosity, K = L
tw
/L
valley
(m/m)1.151.341.161.15
Slope of channel:
Slope of channel, Savg=
Δ
Elev/L
tw
(m/m)0.1330.0080.0040.005

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