Determination of water stress indices as a function of ecological flows

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Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Water stress indices provide a measure of streamflow depletion caused by high rates of withdrawal in relation to renewable supply. In this work, we calculate water stress indices for sub-watersheds in the Kalamazoo River watershed, Michigan, based on local or regionally derived withdrawals, consumptive use coefficients, and stream discharges. We demonstrate the impacts of uncertainty in consumptive use coefficients. We assess the impacts of temporal scale by calculating indices on an average annual basis and during months when withdrawals are highest and flows are lowest. We compare calculated stress indices to location-specific, ecologically-based, critical flow depletions. Calculated flow depletions were found to exceed the critical depletions in a significant number of the HUC-12 watersheds. © ASCE 2012.

Publication Title

World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2012: Crossing Boundaries, Proceedings of the 2012 Congress