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Navajo Nation Drinking Water Conference 2008, Navajo Nation Drinking Water Conference 2008, Radisson Fort McDowell Resort & Casino Scottsdale, Arizona.

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Presentation on theme: "Navajo Nation Drinking Water Conference 2008, Navajo Nation Drinking Water Conference 2008, Radisson Fort McDowell Resort & Casino Scottsdale, Arizona."— Presentation transcript:

1 Navajo Nation Drinking Water Conference 2008, Navajo Nation Drinking Water Conference 2008, Radisson Fort McDowell Resort & Casino Scottsdale, Arizona June 16-19, 2008 THE STATE OF SURFACE WATER MEASUREMENT AND MONITORING IN THE NAVAJO NATION Aregai Tecle 1, Gregg Garfin 2, Diana Anderson 1, John Leeper 3, Jolene Tallsalt- Robertson 3, and Paul Heinrich 1, 1 Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, 2 University of Arizona in Tucson, and 3 Navajo Nation Department of Water Resources in Fort Defiance, Arizona

2 PRESENTATION INCLUDES: Purposes for surface water measurement and monitoring Purposes for surface water measurement and monitoring Measurement devices or approaches Measurement devices or approaches Data types Data types Methods of data retrieval or collection Methods of data retrieval or collection State of Navajo Nation stream flow State of Navajo Nation stream flow measurement measurement Some recommendations Some recommendations

3 STREAM WATER COMES FROM SURFACE AND SUBSURFACE SOURCES. STREAM WATER COMES FROM SURFACE AND SUBSURFACE SOURCES. PRECISE MEASUREMENT OF THE STREAM DISCHARGE RATE IS NEEDED TO ACCURATELY ESTIMATE THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF WATER LEAVING A WATERSHED. THERE ARE MANY REASONS FOR measuring and monitoring STREAM FLOW. PRECISE MEASUREMENT OF THE STREAM DISCHARGE RATE IS NEEDED TO ACCURATELY ESTIMATE THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF WATER LEAVING A WATERSHED. THERE ARE MANY REASONS FOR measuring and monitoring STREAM FLOW. Kinlichee Creek gauge Kinlichee Creek gauge

4 OVERARCHING REASONS FOR MEASUREMENT AND MONITORING SURFACE WATER IN THE NAVAJO NATION Protect & manage Navajo Nation surface water resources for economic, social, cultural and spiritual benefits of the Nation Improve the Nation’s capacity to monitor, plan and manage extreme hydrologic conditions (drought & flooding) Flooding in Wisconsin on 6/9/2008

5 SPECIFIC PURPOSES FOR STREAM FLOW MEASUREMENT To enhance the public safety by providing data To enhance the public safety by providing data for forecasting and managing floods for forecasting and managing floods To delineate and manage flood plains To delineate and manage flood plains To characterize current water-quality conditions To characterize current water-quality conditions To operate and design multipurpose reservoirs To operate and design multipurpose reservoirs - For domestic and agricultural water supply - For domestic and agricultural water supply - For flood control - For flood control - For energy generation - For energy generation - Recreation and wildlife habitat - Recreation and wildlife habitat To design highway bridges and culverts To design highway bridges and culverts

6 SPECIFIC PURPOSES FOR STREAM FLOW MEASUREMENT – Cont.  To set minimum flow requirements to meet aquatic life goals (habitat spawning area, food source, aquatic life goals (habitat spawning area, food source, migration paths of fish and other wildlife) migration paths of fish and other wildlife)  To monitor compliance with minimum flow requirements requirements  To develop or operate recreation facilities  To allocate water for municipal, industrial, and agricultural uses and agricultural uses  To determine impacts of phreatophyte water consumption consumption  To evaluate surface- and ground-water interactions  To facilitate long-term scientific studies of any changes in the hydrologic cycle changes in the hydrologic cycle

7 STREAMFLOW MEASURING DEVICES STREAMFLOW MEASURING DEVICES Flume used for small stream flow measurements Various parts of a stilling well: left figure showing most appropriate location by a bridge to ensure channel stability; right figure shows the different parts of a stilling well. Structure of a Parshall flume Structural example of a V-notch weir

8 STREAM FLOW MEASURING DEVICES - Continue STREAM FLOW MEASURING DEVICES - Continue Pressure transducer – installed submerged in the flow channel useful for long-term measurement and operation (may also be used with no cable as battery- operated) Radar level sensor – non contact measurement of water surface, mostly used for long-term operation and measurement (sensitive to disturbance) Utrasonic water level sensor – non-contact measurement of water surface elevation used for long term operation and monitoring (sensitive to disturbances) Electromagnetic current meter – advantageous in channels where fouling mechanical sensors is problematic

9 STREAM FLOW MEASURING DEVICES - Continue STREAM FLOW MEASURING DEVICES - Continue Mechanical () current meter for infrequent flow measurement – vertical axis Mechanical (Pygmy) current meter for infrequent flow measurement – vertical axisPygmy Mechanical current meter – horizontal axis Current meter – acoustic doppler velocity meter – used for infrequent non- continuous water velocity measurement (has high accuracy) Price pigmy stream flow measuring device –done from a suspended position.

10 STREAM FLOW MEASURING DEVICES - Cont. Ultrasonic velocity with water level transducer –current meter. It is typically mounted in the channel bottom and measures water surface elevation and vertically-integrated velocity in small channel. Bubble manometer – the manometer shelter can be located at a distance from the water’s edge in a safe location and the orifice may be easily moved to follow changing stream channel. Gas bubbles keep the orifice from getting cover by sediment Microwave water surface velocity gage – useful for water surface velocity measurement during high stage floods.

11 DATA TYPES  Snow water equivalent  Stream flow data - Stage height - Event stream flow rate - Event stream flow rate or discharge rate or discharge rate - Cumulative or total - Cumulative or total stream flow amount stream flow amount

12 Chuska Agriculture Case Study Observed Changes: Decreased snow, soil moisture, and irrigation supply since 1999 – Cessation of farming Rachael Novak, CLIMAS and Univ. Arizona Geosciences

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14 Hydrologic Stations GOES Wallops, Virginia Command and Data Acquisition Center DOMSAT User Operations ( Internet ) Stage After Chris Smith, USGS (2008)

15 CURRENT CONDITIONS OF STREAM GAUGES AND ASSOCIATED DATA IN THE NAVAJO NATION Black Creek

16 CHARACTERISTICS THAT INFLUENCE DATA QUALITY AND RELIABILITY CHARACTERISTICS THAT INFLUENCE DATA QUALITY AND RELIABILITY INSTRUMENT RELIABILITY INSTRUMENT RELIABILITY INSTRUMENT MAINTENANCE INSTRUMENT MAINTENANCE DATA HANDLING DATA HANDLING DATA PROCESSING DATA PROCESSING DATA ACCESSIBILITY (Location) DATA ACCESSIBILITY (Location) SPATIAL DISTRIBUTION AND SPATIAL DISTRIBUTION AND REPRESENTATIVENESS OF DATA KNOWLEDGEABLE AND DEDICATED PERSONNEL AVAILABILITY KNOWLEDGEABLE AND DEDICATED PERSONNEL AVAILABILITY Captain Tom wash gauge

17 BLACK CREEK: GAUGE CONDITION Instrument has been operating continuously, however, data recording has been interrupted a number of times Sediment accumulation Problems with the gauging station Channel invasion by Exotic vegetation Channel invasion by Exotic vegetation Channel bed sediment accumulation Channel bed sediment accumulation Channel aggredation & degradation Channel aggredation & degradation Stilling well & vegetation

18 CHINLE CREEK : GAUGE CONDITION Three major problems are apparent in this gauging station: 1) stream braiding resulting in most of the flow taking place away from the gauge, 2) lots of sediment accumulation and 3) stream bottom plant and tree growth Three major problems are apparent in this gauging station: 1) stream braiding resulting in most of the flow taking place away from the gauge, 2) lots of sediment accumulation and 3) stream bottom plant and tree growth The consequences of these conditions are both under and over estimation of stream flow The consequences of these conditions are both under and over estimation of stream flow Stilling well

19 CHINLE CREEK DATA The graph on the left hand side shows the sporadic nature of the data collected form the gauge at Chinle, and there is nothing one can do with such data. The dotted graph of stage- discharge relationship on the right shows low correlation between the two forms of stream flow measurement, which reflects the channel problem. The graph on the left hand side shows the sporadic nature of the data collected form the gauge at Chinle, and there is nothing one can do with such data. The dotted graph of stage- discharge relationship on the right shows low correlation between the two forms of stream flow measurement, which reflects the channel problem.

20 WHEATFIELDS CREEK : GAUGE CONDITION The higher correlation between stage and discharge at low flows comopared to at higher flows is reflective of the stream cross-section. It is stable near the bottom of the stilling well but have vegetation at higher level. The The gauge is in a stable cross-section. However there is a great deal of vegetation invasion above the bankful stage to affect the accuracy of a stream flow measurement. As in the other gauges, we do not have a continuous record to make much sense of the data.

21 TSAILE CREEK : GAUGE CONDITION This stream gauge is located in a very stable and clean reach and there are no problems associated with channel aggradation or degradation nor with sediment accumulation. The only problem is that the instrument is not calibrated for flows that rise well above bankful stage. This stream gauge is located in a very stable and clean reach and there are no problems associated with channel aggradation or degradation nor with sediment accumulation. The only problem is that the instrument is not calibrated for flows that rise well above bankful stage.

22 TSAILE CREEK DATA The measured stream flow record for the gauge at Tsaile is sporadic like those in most of the other NDWR- operated gauges. However the condition of the stream makes the stage-discharge points on the right look good.

23 KINLICHEE CREEK : GAUGE CONDITION The gauge at kinlichee Creek is located under a bridge which is stable with no vegetation growth and little sediment accumulation. The effect can be see in the near-perfect stage-discharge relationship curve below

24 LITTLE COLORADO RIVER NEAR CAMEROON: ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF A USGS-OPERATED STREAM GAUGE stream flow record in the Little Colorado River near Cameron, Arizona year running average of LCR discharge (in cfs) near Cameroon, Arizona Annual average stream flow (in cfs) of Little Colorado River near Cameron, Arizona Monthly average stream flow (in cfs) of Little Colorado River near Cameron, Arizona This is a long term data which can be manipulated to show different hydrologic conditions around the area of measurement. The graphs on the right hand side show wet and dry periods for 58 years, the upper one on a monthly basis in 3-D and below it is the bimodal monthly averages. The graphs to the left show the annual average (upper) and a 5-year running average average (lower) showing a generally decreasing trend with time.

25 SAN JUAN RIVER STREAM FLOW CHARACTERISTICS A five year running average of stream flow rate (in cfs) at San Juan River Monthly average hydrograph of flow rate at San Juan River (in cfs) Stream flow of San Juan River in New Mexico near the border with the Navajo Nation The San Juan River gauge is operated by the USGS. Compared to those operated by the NDWR, the data can be used for many purposes. Here we use it to show the wet season in the lower right hand side and to show the decreasing stream flow (or drying) condition with time in the lower left hand side. The 3-D figure to the right shows the monthly average stream flow for 27 years. The figure also shows periods of high and low flows as well as its persistent unimodal nature. We can also use the data for modeling water yield and peak flow or flood forecasting The San Juan River gauge is operated by the USGS. Compared to those operated by the NDWR, the data can be used for many purposes. Here we use it to show the wet season in the lower right hand side and to show the decreasing stream flow (or drying) condition with time in the lower left hand side. The 3-D figure to the right shows the monthly average stream flow for 27 years. The figure also shows periods of high and low flows as well as its persistent unimodal nature. We can also use the data for modeling water yield and peak flow or flood forecasting

26 SOME CONCLUDING REMARKS The condition of the different streams and the gauging facilities in the Navajo Nation and the data gathered from those streams tell us many things. The condition of the different streams and the gauging facilities in the Navajo Nation and the data gathered from those streams tell us many things. 1.The stream gauges operated by the Navajo Nation are all functioning, however, 2.The stream reaches where the gauges are located are not well maintained to provide reliable data - data are not gathered following USGS protocols and even if they were - data are not gathered following USGS protocols and even if they were - the data from most of the gauges need proper processing for any use 3.The available gauges are concentrated in a very small portion of the Nation to represent the hydrologic conditions in the Navajo Nation 4.The main reasons for the problems are inadequate funding and shortage of manpower to properly operate existing gauges, install new ones, process and make data available for various uses, and to train and hire enough number of technical personnel to make all these possible.

27 SOME RECOMMENDATIONS Since availability of accurate and reliable stream flow data are important for the various reasons stated previously, we recommend : Since availability of accurate and reliable stream flow data are important for the various reasons stated previously, we recommend : 1. That having adequate hydrological information be a priority since many important situations such as accurate flood forecasting, proper reservoir operation, reliable estimation of agricultural and domestic water supplies, drought management as well as satisfactory wildlife and ecosystem maintenance and management depend on it; 2. Obtain adequate funding for existing instrument maintenance, personnel training and hiring new employees; 3. Ensure that data gathered from existing gages are properly processed and analyzed following standard protocol and make it available for others to use; 4. In the long-term, make funds available for installing gauges in streams that are not gauged at present.

28 SOME MORE RECOMMENDATIONS 1. Seek federal government support to have the capability for proper hydrological data collection, maintenance and processing to meet its needs; 2. Incorporate Navajo Nation data with USGS data to provide reliable forecasting system; 3. Develop a collaborative effort among local (Navajo) and relevant state and federal agencies to work together to ensure availability of needed hydrological information for various uses; 4. Develop ecosystem-based and multiobjective water resources management.

29 THANK YOU

30 Recommendations Enhance data communication – telemeter data in near real-time – this will enhance usability and quality control Leverage existing networks Use the data…it will drive improvements in instrument maintenance and quality control

31 Key Conclusions Limited data quantity and quality Continuity, timing, site maintenance Data value – baseline drought, spatial supplement Coarse time scales – seasonal, annual Data currently not used for operations or research

32 Hazard forecasting and warning Streamflow and water supply prediction Ecosystem and environmental monitoring Agricultural monitoring and prediction Drought monitoring Typical Data Uses and Needs

33 Upper Little Colorado Region Courtesy of Jean Morrill, CLIMAS

34 SOURCES OF INFORMATION USED IN THIS PRESENTATION  On-site examination of stream flow gauging sites and instruments Relevant literature review Relevant literature review Downloading available USGS Downloading available USGS data on Navajo streams Interview of relevant personnel Interview of relevant personnel (NDWR and USGS) Historical data acquisition Historical data acquisition

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