Next Article in Journal
Flood Hazard Scenarios of the Sirba River (Niger): Evaluation of the Hazard Thresholds and Flooding Areas
Next Article in Special Issue
Model Uncertainty Analysis Methods for Semi-Arid Watersheds with Different Characteristics: A Comparative SWAT Case Study
Previous Article in Journal
A Pilot Study of an Electromagnetic Field for Control of Reverse Osmosis Membrane Fouling and Scaling During Brackish Groundwater Desalination
Previous Article in Special Issue
The Impacts of Climate Variation and Land Use Changes on Streamflow in the Yihe River, China
Open AccessArticle

Assessment of Hydrologic Alteration Metrics for Detecting Urbanization Impacts

Department of Civil Engineering, Auburn University, 238 Harbert Engineering Center, Auburn, AL 36849, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2019, 11(5), 1017; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11051017
Received: 6 April 2019 / Revised: 6 May 2019 / Accepted: 9 May 2019 / Published: 15 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrological Impacts of Climate Change and Land Use/Land Cover Change)
Urbanization is increasing rapidly and has the potential to alter the hydrologic cycle. It is uncertain if hydrologic alteration metrics developed for large-scale analyses detect the impacts of urbanization. This study tests the ability of two such methods, Indicators of Hydrologic Alteration (IHA) and streamflow signatures, to detect the effects of urbanization in two watersheds in the southeastern U.S.A. A hydrologic model (HEC-HMS) was used to simulate flows in ungauged upstream tributaries to determine if analysis of flow from a large gauged watershed detects urbanization effects on upstream tributaries. IHA analysis detected trends in time in the watersheds, but the results were the opposite of what would be expected as urbanization increased minimum flows, decreased maximum flows, and decreased flashiness based on the trend in time and comparison with an undeveloped watershed. IHA parameters were more sensitive to urbanization than streamflow signatures. Subcatchments that transitioned from low to moderate or high levels of urbanization had greater levels of hydrologic alteration than was detected at the watershed outlet. Analyses of stream gauge network data may underestimate the importance of urbanization as a watershed characteristic due to scale issues, the variable effects of water management, and the dynamic nature of urbanization. View Full-Text
Keywords: streamflow; indicators of hydrologic alteration; streamflow signatures; urbanization; water management; scale issues; watershed modeling streamflow; indicators of hydrologic alteration; streamflow signatures; urbanization; water management; scale issues; watershed modeling
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

McDaniel, R.D.; O’Donnell, F.C. Assessment of Hydrologic Alteration Metrics for Detecting Urbanization Impacts. Water 2019, 11, 1017.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop