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Great Falls of the Passaic River at Paterson, N.J

Great Falls of the Passaic River at Paterson, N.J.

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USGS Water Science Centers are located in each state.

There is a USGS Water Science Center office in each State. Washington Oregon California Idaho Nevada Montana Wyoming Utah Colorado Arizona New Mexico North Dakota South Dakota Nebraska Kansas Oklahoma Texas Minnesota Iowa Missouri Arkansas Louisiana Wisconsin Illinois Mississippi Michigan Indiana Ohio Kentucky Tennessee Alabama Pennsylvania West Virginia Georgia Florida Caribbean Alaska Hawaii New York Vermont New Hampshire Maine Massachusetts South Carolina North Carolina Rhode Island Virginia Connecticut New Jersey Maryland-Delaware-D.C.


Project Title: NJ179 Delaware NAWQA SPARROW
Project Number: LJ00AER
Project Chief:
Project Start Date: 01-JAN-2000
Project End Date:30-SEP-2011

Project Objectives

The model as currently designed will explore factors that affect nutrient transport in the Delaware Basin. Major refinements being developed for the model that will make it more useful at a local level include:

  1. An improved stream network coverage so watersheds smaller than 60 square miles can be incorporated,
  2. Development of topographic and distance weighting factors for different land uses to simulate more realistic watershed processes,
  3. Development of an Access database for data preprocessing and manipulation.

SPARROW modeling will be used to:

  • Assess the impacts of different land uses on nutrient transport and attenuation,
  • Integrate data at different scales from various agencies as part of the CENR effort

Statement of Problem

To date SPARROW models have shown that land-to-water delivery losses of nutrients are significant. What processes are responsible for these 'losses' is uncertain. Certainly some of this 'loss' is storage and transport in groundwater systems. It is expected, and recent studies have suggested, that on local and regional scales topography and soil types are important factors in transport processes. In addition, the distance of a particular land use from a stream channel or point of measurement will influence transport and attenuation processes. By combining land-use, soils, topography, and distance in a GIS based weighting scheme it should be possible to determine what factors are important for over-land transport of different constituents. Inclusion of these factors in a regional SPARROW model will allow for a more rigorous exploration of land-to-water processes and allow for a more complete analysis of data for the CENR program.

Strategy and Approach

SPARROW modeling is a major part of the USGS/NAWQA contribution to the CENR effort. USGS personnel on the Delaware NAWQA study will develop the data sets and run the model. Assistance will be sought from USSG staff in Reston Virginia, and Baltimore, Maryland, who have previous experience with the model. Development of slope and distance weighting factors will be coordinated with on-going efforts in the New Jersey District. Acquisition of data sets from other agencies will be coordinated through the NAWQA/CENR effort. Work will be conducted in three phases:

  1. Develop regional data sets and conduct regional analysis using national model output,
  2. Develop smaller scale stream network and distance/slope weighting factors for Delaware Basin model,
  3. Incorporate NAWQA and other agency data into model for regional analysis.

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