Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2014NJ350B

Modeling hydrologic and stream temperature response to land-use and climate change in developed and developing watersheds: a comprehensive analysis

Institute: New Jersey
Year Established: 2014 Start Date: 2014-03-01 End Date: 2015-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $20,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $40,001

Principal Investigators: Joseph Daraio

Abstract: There are a wide range of applications that lack sufficient understanding in hydrology from both models and field studies for reliable predictions to guide management decisions (NRC, 2012). Land-use change, human alteration of rivers and streams, and climate change interact across scales and in ways not fully understood to affect hydrologic and temperature response of a watershed. In particular, there is a need for greater understanding of stream temperature response of river systems to hydrologic inputs. This is of importance to the sustainability of water-supply and water quality, and it is particularly important to have a measure of the uncertainty in forecasts of land-use change, climate change, and watershed response. Rainfall-runoff models are an important way to understand hydrologic response and enable comparisons between watersheds. Hydrologic and stream temperature simulations combined with field data provide a robust means of analyzing watershed response at many scales, both in space and time. It is proposed to develop rainfall-runoff models to simulate the effects of land-use and climate change on hydrologic response in two watersheds in New Jersey for comparative analyses of watersheds with urbanized (developed), developing, and undeveloped areas. Additionally, it is proposed to set up a network of stream temperature data loggers for the development of stream temperature models to assess stream temperature response to land-use and climate change in these watersheds. These will serve as base models that can be further refined and developed for linkage with coastal and estuarine hydraulics, urban drainage, water quality, and ecosystem models.