Holistic Management of Temporary Watersheds in Central Mexico:

Pedro Joaquín Gutiérrez-Yurrita


The center of Mexico is dominated by seasonal rivers, with an erratic hydrodynamics due to natural seasonality of the system, and human actions on flows. To date there are no studies on environmental flows in rivers with high seasonality (Natural + Anthropogenic), especially in areas where water demand is extremely high. About 50 million people are living in the region. In addition, this region is considered as one of the most eco-diverse regions in the world. Many mathematical models for estimating environmental flows have been developed, yet no model is truly holistic, by not taking into account a variable of extreme importance to the ecological functioning of the watershed, its marked seasonal nature (temporality). Due to this lack of information on how to manage temporary rivers, most managers use conventional indices to estimate environmental flows or at best, use the standard Integrated River Basin Management. The holism of the third culture is taken as the paradigm framework to build the improved model I present in this paper. It should be noted that an important aspect of the model is its simplicity, since it is to be used by people with little knowledge in mathematics and thus easy to take, and common to all the rivers of the region data. All approaches for estimating environmental flows may have strengths and weaknesses, but the truth is that for management to resolve the conflict between conserving a natural resource and develop a village should be viewed in a holistic perspective. The main objective of this paper is to present an improved mathematical model for the decision makers to better manage a scarce, conflicting and indispensable for life and ecological functioning resource.


Running Waters; Intermittently Flowing; Seasonality; Holism; Conservation of Landscape Heritage


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