A Fragmented System - Dams on the Susquehanna River
The Bucknell University Environmental Center and the Susquehanna River Heartland Coalition for Environmental Science welcomes you to the 8th Annual Susquehanna River Symposium.

This year's event focuses on the importance, legacy, and environmental impact of dams on the river and its watershed.

The symposium will be held in the Terrace Room of the Elaine Langone Center on the campus of Bucknell University. More information the building location and parking are contained on this website.

Friday, October 18, 2013 - 7 PM to 10 PM
Saturday, October 19, 2013 - 9 AM to 2 PM

All presentations are FREE and open to the public.

Registration is NOT required for this event. Welcome tables will be located at the entrance to the Terrace Room (Rm. 256) in the Langone Center. Staff will be present to help answer questions on Friday from 4:30 to 6:45 pm and Saturday from 7:30 to 9:00 am. They will provide everyone name tags and a folder containing a copy of symposium program and other materials.


Download a symposium schedule here.

Conowingo hydroelectric dam on lower Susquehanna River

Conowingo hydroelectric dam on the lower Susquehanna River, Maryland.
This facility generates electricity for millions of people and industry in the mid-Atlantic region.

Alvin R. Bush flood control dam
Alvin R. Bush flood control dam on Kettle Creek, West Branch Susquehanna River.
Safe Harbor hydroelectric dam on Susquehanna River

Safe Harbor hydroelectric dam on the Susquehanna River near Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

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Adam T. Bower fabridam is inflated every spring to create Lake Augusta, a recreational area near Sunbury, PA.

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Remnants of water-powered grist mill dams, some dating back to the early 1700s, can be found
throughout the Susquehanna watershed. Many now pose a safety, maintenance, and water quality problem.

Fish Passageway at York Haven hydroelectric dam

Fish passageway at the York Haven hydroelectric dam.

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Logging splash dams (such as this one built on Pine Creek in1908) were built to flush logs
out of the tributaries downstream to saw mills and sorting facilities on the main stem of the Susquehanna River.

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Holtwood hydroelectric dam on the lower Susquehanna River.

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The symposium focuses on the impact of dams on the Susquehanna River, ranging from pre-historic glacial ice dams, to historic mill, canal, and logging dams, to the modern hydroelectric, flood control, and recreational dams. Many communities, railroads, and industrial plants rely upon electricity generated from four major hydropower facilities built on the lower Susquehanna - Conowingo, Holtwood, Safe Harbor, and York Haven dams.
Dams can provide a source of renewable energy, flood control, and recreational boating to millions of citizens in the Susquehanna watershed, but they can also impact the fisheries, water quality, and aquatic life in river and the Chesapeake Bay.

Learn how environmental consultants and the hydropower facility owners are assessing the environmental impacts and evaluating various management alternatives as part of the federal energy relicensing process. The solutions are complex, difficult, and require trade-offs.

Also featured will be research posters by over 100 students and faculty studying the many streams, rivers, lakes, and wetlands throughout the Susquehanna watershed.

Exhibits and representatives from many organizations will also be present, including the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, American Rivers, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, Trout Unlimited, PA Department of Environmental Protection, PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Buffalo Creek Watershed Association, and the Merrill Linn Conservancy for Land and Waterways.

Terrace Room, Elaine Langone Center
Bucknell University

7:00 pm
Dr. Peter Wilshusen
Executive Director
Bucknell University Environmental Center

7:15 pm
Exploring the watershed through university research and collaborative partnerships
H. W. “Skip” Wieder
Executive Director
Susquehanna River Heartland Coalition
for Environmental Studies

7:30 pm
Keynote Address
“The legacy of dams on the Susquehanna - a view upstream from the Chesapeake Bay”
Executive Director
Chesapeake Bay Commission

8:00 - 10:00 pm
Student research posters, scientific exhibits, and evening social