Utah Water Science Center
Green River, UT
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Stream Stats - Streamflow statistics for ungaged streams
Project Chief: Terry Kenney, USGS Salt Lake City, Utah
Reliable estimates of a wide range of streamflow characteristics are needed by structure designers, land-use planners, and resource managers. Throughout most of Utah streamflow statistics are only available for gaged locations. Currently, those interested in acquiring these types of streamflow statistics for ungaged streams must conduct their own analyses. Comprehensive data acquisition, selection and proper employment of statistical techniques, and quantitative evaluation of final results are critical components in these analyses. Without a comprehensive geographic information system (GIS), complete with developed and evaluated streamflow statistical models, those in need of flow statistics acquire data from different sources, use an assortment of evaluation techniques, and generate results of varying confidence. A web-based streamflow statistical tool would provide structure designers, land-use planners, and resource managers with consistent and accurate streamflow estimates in a timely manner.
The principal goal of the proposed project is to provide statistical streamflow information for gaged and ungaged sites via web-based tools to those tasked with the management, protection, and development of water resources in Utah. Specific project tasks include:
RELEVANCE AND BENEFITS
The proposed tasks will provide information on streamflow statistics for gaged and ungaged sites on streams throughout Utah. These statistics are essential for the proper management of the State’s water resources. Flood-flow data are used in the design of highway and railroad stream crossings, delineation of floodplains and flood-prone areas, management of water-control structures, and water-supply management. Low-flow statistics are used for addressing TMDL issues, water-quality management, water-supply planning, design of water-treatment facilities, and proper disposal of waste-water effluent. Along with low-flow statistics, monthly and annual streamflow statistics are used in assessing fish and wildlife habitat, water rights, and land-use issues.
Geohydrologic regions will be delineated using three factors: (1) statistically defined groups of similar basin and climatic characteristics; (2) significant physiographic features; and (3) scientific judgment based upon general knowledge of the area (Berenbrock, 2002). Flood frequency estimates along with low, and monthly and annual streamflow statistics for all Utah gaging stations with 10 or more years of daily mean discharge record will be computed. Regional regression equations to predict the cooperator-selected streamflow statistics at ungaged locations will be developed for each of the geohydrologic regions in Utah. These models will be built upon regional relationships between drainage basin and climatic characteristics, and computed and estimated streamflow statistics at gaging stations. The USGS StreamStats integrated GIS will be implemented in Utah. Statistics computed for all streamflow gaging stations, along with developed regional regression equations, will be incorporated within the Utah StreamStats database.
All processed and computed data will be incorporated within the Utah StreamStats web-based GIS. For each set of statistical models that are developed, a USGS report describing their development, application and use will be prepared. Documentation for the Utah StreamStats application will be prepared and made accessible from the StreamStats interface.