Jeff Opperman

Jeff Opperman is The Nature Conservancy's senior advisor for sustainable hydropower. He works to promote ecologically sustainable water management in river basins with hydropower infrastructure. Through this work, Jeff has provided strategic and scientific assistance to environmental flow assessments for several rivers in the United States and for the Yangtze River and the Patuca River (Honduras).

Jeff's Posts

The Lessons of ‘Avatar’ for Sustainable Hydropower

February 23rd, 2010

Conservancy scientist Jeff Opperman discovers a new ending to the script of "Avatar" -- and wonders if the Battle for Hometree even needed to be fought. More

A River of Song: Channeling My Top 10 Tunes

February 3rd, 2010

Rivers have generated more songs than any other habitat. In honor of World Water Day on March 22, Jeff Opperman offers his top 10 favorite river songs—what are your favorites? More

From Drumbeats to Texts & Tweets: Different Ways to Say ‘The River is Rising’

January 5th, 2010

Reducing floods through dams on rivers like the Zambezi can actually make the floods that do happen catastrophic. How can conservation help? More

Adapting to Climate Change? Try Adapting to Water Change

December 17th, 2009

Climate change is changing water in big and potentially dangerous ways, says Conservancy water expert Jeff Opperman -- and we need to start adapting now. More

Giving Thanks for Cleaner Lakes and Rivers (Even the Cuyahoga)

November 26th, 2009

While those who work in freshwater conservation frequently (and understandably) emphasize the daunting array of threats to aquatic ecosystems, Thanksgiving seems a good time to reflect on reasons for optimism and, well, gratitude.  I live near Cleveland, a city that since the 1960s has been known primarily for sports heartbreaks and the rather incongruous event […] More

Springsteen & the Conservation Ethic: ‘You Can’t Save Everybody, But You Gotta Try’

November 13th, 2009

I just started writing this blog on freshwater conservation, so I should be talking about river flows and floodplain fisheries and such. But last night I saw Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band perform in Cleveland and I can’t get it out of my head. In his words, Springsteen was continuing the “lifelong conversation” […] More

Fish and People on the Edge: Why the Zambezi River Looks OK, But Isn’t

October 14th, 2009

How do you convince people that a river they’ve known their whole lives is not the river it once was…or could be? That turned out to be my challenge last week, when I traveled to Zambia in support of The Nature Conservancy’s new project to restore the Zambezi River.  After several days of meetings with […] More

Wisdom from the Mouths of Babes: Feeling Better through Conservation

September 24th, 2009

I was tucking my five-year-old daughter into bed and, as kids tend to do, she launched into a series of questions  — part curiosity, part stalling tactic. Her topic that night was employment, and she asked why various people did what they did, such as: “Why is Aunt Amy a doctor?” I mustered a response […] More

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