Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2017GA377B

Estimation of irrigation withdrawals in the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint (ACF) River Basin

Institute: Georgia
Year Established: 2017 Start Date: 2017-03-01 End Date: 2018-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $18,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $36,000

Principal Investigators: Jian Luo

Abstract: Groundwater is the major source of water in the lower Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint (ACF) River basin in south-western part of Georgia. With the large scale withdrawals of groundwater for the irrigation in the region, it becomes very important to continuously monitor the pumping from the wells to get the clear and accurate estimate of amount and pattern of water extracted in the ACF River basin. The overarching objective of the project is to develop a robust estimation method for irrigation withdrawals based on a rigorous geostatistical analysis of meter data with zonation to consider data non-homogeneity in the ACF River basin. A cutting-edge cluster based variogram analysis approach will be developed to capture multiple correlation structures based on controlling attributes of the pumping data. This will be aided by residual statistics and restricted maximum likelihood technique to estimate parameters for variogram models. The models will be validated using residual statistics and cross validation. The project has the potential to set a roadmap for comprehensive methods to monitor groundwater level and estimate irrigation withdrawals with good accuracy in larger river basins.