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Measuring flow and reporting water use for stream-diversion ditches in Hawaii

Project Chief: Ronald L. Rickman
Project Period: October 2013 through December 2014
Cooperator: Hawaii State Commission on Water Resource Management
Location: Islands of Kauai, Oahu, Maui, and Hawaii


Water-use data from surface-water sources is typically not reported by users. One of the reasons for not reporting is that collecting water-use information requires specialized equipment and training to compute the flow measurements.


The objectives of this study are to (1) develop training curriculum, agenda, handouts for measuring water flow and reporting monthly water-use for large-scale stream-diversion ditches, and (2) provide training at workshops to be hosted by the Commission on Water Resource Management (CWRM) on Kauai, Oahu, Maui, and Hawaii Island.

Relevance and Benefits

The results from this study are necessary to properly manage surface water in the State of Hawaii. The study is consistent with the mission of the USGS Science Strategy to provide citizens, communities, natural-resource managers, and policymakers with a clearer knowledge of the status of their water resources.


Training curriculum will be developed by the USGS and CWRM. Training workshops will be held for large-scale diversion ditch owners and/or operators. Products from this study will be made available on the internet.


USGS and CWRM personnel provided training on the islands of Kauai, Oahu, Maui, and Hawaii during the period October 1 to December 31, 2014.


USGS/CWRM presentation, Oct. 2, 2014, An Introduction to Measuring Water Flow and Reporting Water Use for Large-Scale Stream-Diversion Ditches in Hawai‘i

Inspection form, Oct. 2, 2014, Discharge Measurement and Site Inspection Form

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