MODELING FIRE EFFECTS ON WATER QUALITY FOR DECISION SUPPORT AND TARGETED MITIGATION IN NATIONAL PARK SERVICE (NPS) RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
Southwest Watershed Research
2011 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
The objective of this project is to quantitatively link burn severity with existing watershed scale hydrology and erosion models to assess risk to aquatic resources and downstream communities.
1b.Approach (from AD-416)
For 4 to 5 National Parks assemble the needed data and calibrate the watershed models for current conditions. Post-fire watershed assessment can then be conducted quickly by importing a fire severity map. Transform available data and model simulation results to information tailored to NPS resource management needs for decisions regarding fire and fuel-load management. Train NPS and BAER staff to use the AGWA integrated modeling tool.
In 2011 we worked with our Univ. of Arizona (UA) collaborators on this project to put on an AGWA (Automated Geospatial Watershed Assessment) training session. 30 participants from National Park Service (NPS), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), U.S. Forest Service (USFS), Bureau od Indian Affairs (BIA), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the Utah Dept. of Water Quality and UCLA attended the multi-day training session in December of 2010. As part of the training, a needs assessment was conducted to find out how AGWA might be improved to better address trainee needs for the resource management decisions they are responsible for. The ARS-US is now in the process of developing a subset of the requested improvements to be tested on four priority national parks where we have acquired the geospatial data (digital elevation data, soils, land cover and land use). The project was managed through conference calls on roughly a bi-monthly basis, frequent e-mail exchanges, and an in-person training session with the NPS project manager and his colleagues.