A Simple framework for incorporating seasonal streamflow forecasts into existing water resource management practices1

Gavin Gong, Lucien Wang, Laura Condon, Alastair Shearman, Upmanu Lall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

Gong, Gavin, Lucien Wang, Laura Condon, Alastair Shearman, and Upmanu Lall, 2010. A Simple Framework for Incorporating Seasonal Streamflow Forecasts Into Existing Water Resource Management Practices. Journal of the American Water Resources Association (JAWRA) 46(3):574-585. DOI: 10.1111/j.1752-1688.2010.00435.x. Abstract: Climate-based streamflow forecasting, coupled with an adaptive reservoir operation policy, can potentially improve decisions by water suppliers and watershed stakeholders. However, water suppliers are often wary of straying too far from their current management practices, and prefer forecasts that can be incorporated into existing system modeling tools. This paper presents a simple framework for utilizing streamflow forecasts that works within an existing management structure. Climate predictors are used to develop seasonal inflow forecasts. These are used to specify operating rules that connect to the probability of future (end of season) reservoir states, rather than to the current storage, as is done now. By considering both current storage and anticipated inflow, the likelihood of meeting management goals can be improved. The upper Delaware River Basin in the northeastern United States is used to demonstrate the basic idea. Physically plausible climate-based forecasts of March-April reservoir inflow are developed. Existing simulation tools and rule curves for the system are used to convert the inflow forecasts to reservoir level forecasts. Operating policies are revised during the forecast period to release less water during forecasts of low reservoir level. Hindcast simulations demonstrate reductions of 1.6% in the number of drought emergency days, which is a key performance measure. Forecasts with different levels of skill are examined to explore their utility.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)574-585
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the American Water Resources Association
Volume46
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2010
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Climate variability
  • Drought
  • Forecasting
  • Reservoir management
  • Streamflow
  • Water allocation
  • Water policy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Earth-Surface Processes

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'A Simple framework for incorporating seasonal streamflow forecasts into existing water resource management practices1'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this