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Hydrology 2016, 3(1), 13; doi:10.3390/hydrology3010013

Water Balance to Recharge Calculation: Implications for Watershed Management Using Systems Dynamics Approach

1
School of Engineering, University of California, Merced, CA 95343, USA
2
Department of Civil Engineering, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID 83844, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Tammo Steenhuis
Received: 16 November 2015 / Revised: 6 March 2016 / Accepted: 8 March 2016 / Published: 18 March 2016
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Abstract

Groundwater depletion in the face of growth is a well-known problem, particularly in those areas that have grown to become dependent on a declining resource. This research comprises a broad synthesis of existing water resources data, to understand the long-term implications of continued growth in water demand on groundwater dominant water resources, and to develop a tool for sustainable water management. The Palouse region of Washington and Idaho, USA. (approximately 60,000 people in a rural setting) is entirely dependent on groundwater from two basalt aquifers for potable water. Using the systems dynamics approach and a water balance that considered the entire hydrologic cycle, a hydrologic model of these aquifers was developed, tested and applied to simulate their behavior over a 150 year time period assuming the current infrastructure does not change. With 1% population growth and current water extraction rates, the results indicated the upper aquifer use may be sustainable, while the lower aquifer use is likely unsustainable in the long term. This study also shows that uncertainties in key aspects of the system create limitations to groundwater management. View Full-Text
Keywords: system dynamics model; groundwater management; Palouse Basin Watershed; water demand forecast system dynamics model; groundwater management; Palouse Basin Watershed; water demand forecast
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Dhungel, R.; Fiedler, F. Water Balance to Recharge Calculation: Implications for Watershed Management Using Systems Dynamics Approach. Hydrology 2016, 3, 13.

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