Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2018ND337B

Examining the Impact of Devils Lakes Outlets on Flood Risk and Water Quality of the Sheyenne River

Institute: North Dakota
Year Established: 2018 Start Date: 2018-03-01 End Date: 2019-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $3,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $6,000

Principal Investigators: Xiaodong Zhang

Abstract: Since 1993, Devils Lake water level has risen by nearly 10 meters and caused extensive flooding in the surrounding area, and greatly increased the chance of natural spillage to the Sheyenne River. To mitigate Devils Lake flooding and to prevent its natural spillage, two outlets were constructed at the west and east sides of the lake to drain the lake water to the Sheyenne River in a controlled fashion. In this study, we propose to investigate the impact of this increased water inflow from the outlets on the Sheyenne River streamflow and floodplain by coupling SWAT and HEC-RAS models. SWAT is a hydrological model which will be used to simulate the Sheyenne River streamflow in presence and absence of the outlets. HEC-RAS model applies to calculate the impact of outlets on the Sheyenne River floodplain using SWAT-simulated streamflow as input. Finally, the results of the coupled model will be integrated with our previous findings for Devils Lake to control the lake flooding while preserving damage to the downstream river.