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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Managing for Floodplains and Aquatic Species: A Framework for Multi- Objective Reservoir Operations

Authors:

Jocelyn Anleitner

Richard Palmer

Kim Lutz

K Kennedy

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Year of Publication:
2014
Secondary Title:
Proceedings of ASCE's 2014 World Environmental and Water Resources Congress
DOI:
10.1061/9780784413548.106
Pages:
1060-1069
Year:
2014
Date:
30-May-2014
URL:
https://ascelibrary.org/doi/abs/10.1061/9780784413548.106

Abstract

A daily time-step optimization model was created to evaluate the tradeoffs between the Connecticut River's natural environmental services and its reservoirs' multiple uses. The model includes 54 reservoirs whose purposes range from hydropower production, flood control, recreation, and water supply. This paper evaluates the relationships between flood control and environmental flows for aquatic species and floodplain health. Environmental flow targets, developed by aquatic scientists and biologists, are based on a return to more natural flows. Stakeholders determined allowable percent deviations from natural flows for each ecological species of interest, for each month of the year, at critical locations throughout the basin. The preliminary results of this model indicate that flows in the river can be returned to a more natural flow regime without significantly increasing the occurrence of flooding by adjusting existing operational storage targets.