Study, Protect, Improve and Manage Water Dependent Eco Systems


All cbec staff has extensive experience in geomorphology, with several staff being regional leaders in the discipline. We have undertaken geomorphic reconnaissance and assessments from montaine to tidal environments from California to Scotland!

What is eco engineering?

  • Eco engineering describes water resources engineering services that are concerned with developing and providing ecologically sensitive and environmentally sustainable solutions in the fields of hydrology, hydraulics, geomorphology and restoration and rehabilitation design.
  • cbec provides geomorphic services in rivers, estuaries and tidal zones. We conduct field reconnaissance (including Rapid Assessment Methods and "fluvial audits"), geomorphic interpretation and assessment, channel migration analysis, habitat restoration, and GPS mapping of geomorphic features.

    Rapid geomorphic assessments using hand held computer/GPS technology.

    A thorough understanding of the physical processes involved in tidal and fluvial environments is essential to the design of our projects and at cbec we work hard at understanding these processes. For example, understanding the geomorphic setting of our project sites is essential.

    Relatively “pristine” situations should be “preserved” wherever possible.

    More degraded situations should be “restored” or “rehabilitated” through stabilization and re-contouring.

    In situations where the system has degraded historically and reached a new equilibrium, we should manage for the new condition.

    cbec recently developed the Stream Susceptibility Assessment System (SSAS) based on a three tiered approach:

    • Tier 1 involves the development of a combined susceptibility and applicability decision support tool. This includes conducting a watershed scale GIS- and remote sensing-based screening analysis of various methodologies to quantify stream susceptibility to hydromodification.
    • Tier 2 involves conducting Rapid Geomorphic Assessments (RGA) for identified and prioritized areas that are screened to have high and low erosion potential in Tier 1. This field-based study also provides calibration and validation for Tier 1.
    • Tier 3 identifies key geomorphic thresholds (e.g. relationships between channel slope, median particle size, and drainage area for stable and unstable channels, critical bank heights in various channel materials, channel response to changes in flow and sediment supply, etc.) from comparison of stable and unstable channels.

    SSAS geomorphic tools.

    As a part of the SSAS, we are implementing a form of the “Fluvial Audit” developed by cbec staff.

    And making linkages with habitat:

    Hydrology, Hydraulics, Geomorphology, Design, and Field Services - these are the tools in our toolbox. See Projects for how we combine them all...

    cbec… pioneering new developments in geomorphology.

    site map | cbec, inc. eco engineering | 2544 Industrial Blvd, West Sacramento, CA 95691 | P: 916.231.6052 | contact us