W5: Generic River Basin Water Management Models

Organised by Pete Loucks


Title: Generic Simulation Models for Facilitating Stakeholder Involvement in Water Resources Planning and Management

Authors: Daniel Loucks

Abstract: The models discussed in this workshop have many features in common, and some that differ. All are what we commonly call decision support systems for analyzing alternative water, and, in some cases, watershed management alternatives. All are interactive, i.e., they use graphic interfaces and are menu driven. After some training interested stakeholders can explore questions and assumptions using these tools. Each model is designed to be flexible enough to fit most if not all water resource systems no matter where located. Each is a tool that can be used, at least as a first step, in the identification and evaluation of alternative management policies and practices. Just how well models like these have met their goals in their many applications is the subject of this workshop. The purpose of this workshop is to identify weaknesses and research and development needs that can lead us toward more effective models for addressing current and potential future management issues. The paragraphs that follow briefly describe five of the models that will be demonstrated and discussed in this workshop. These include MIKE BASIN from Danish Hydraulics Institute, MODSIM from Colorado State University, RIBASIM from Delft Hydraulics, WaBaMo from WASY, and WEAP from Tellus Institute. We welcome the presentation of others as well.

Title: MODSIM: Decision Support System for Integrated River Basin Management

Authors: John Labadie

Abstract: MODSIM 8.0 is a generalized river basin management decision support system that is implemented on desktop computers operating under Microsoft Windows 2000 or XP using the new Microsoft .NET Framework. Since all components are developed entirely from native Visual C++.NET and Visual Basic.NET code, there is no need for purchase of expensive licenses for proprietary software. MODSIM 8.0 employs a powerful, interactive graphical user interface (GUI) for creating, locating and connecting river basin network components, as well as spreadsheet-style data editing in an object-oriented data base management system. Powerful data import tools are included for extracting time series data from external data base management systems. In addition, GEO-MODSIM is a full implementation of MODSIM 8.0 that operates as a custom extension in ArcGIS (ESRI, Inc.), allowing automatic generation of MODSIM networks from geometric networks and processing of spatial database information for MODSIM network features (Fig. 3). GEO-MODSIM networks can be developed, edited, executed, and output results displayed completely within the ArcMAP interface for ArcGIS. The basic solver in MODSIM 8.0 is a state-of-the-art network flow optimization algorithm that is more than an order of magnitude faster than solvers currently in use in other river basin modeling packages and capable of simulating extremely large-scale networks. An iterative solution procedure allows consideration of non-network and conditional constraints, providing the same optimization capability of slower and less efficient mixed integer linear programming solvers. MODSIM maintains complete reliance on user input data and specifications for describing system features, operational requirements, and priorities, which are separated from the network modeling algorithmic structure; no a priori defined operating policies or priorities are built-in to MODSIM. MODSIM 8.0 is applicable to long term planning (monthly), medium term management (weekly), and short-term operations (daily) in river systems.

Title: Models for Water Resources Planning and Management

Authors: Eelco van Beek, Stefan Kaden, John Labadie, Jack Sieber, David Wood

Abstract: There are many kinds of models that can be used to study various water resources planning and management issues. Some of these models are designed to examine, in considerable detail, the hydrologic or hydraulic processes that take place in watersheds, in water bodies, or in facilities built to remove wastes from water or wastewater. Other models are designed to identify and evaluate potentially attractive facility and management alternatives prior to their detailed design. The computer simulation programs reviewed in this workshop are designed to assist those responsible for planning and management. Using continually updated information, they could also be used in real time for forecasting possible outcomes of current operations, but this is not their intended purpose. The DSSs reviewed and discussed in this workshop are relatively simple. They are not suitable for detailed hydraulic design. Their simplicity reduces the input data required for simulation as well as the detail and precision that can be found in the results. Simulations are based on mass balances of quantity and quality constituents, taking into account flow routing, seepage, evaporation, and consumption, as applicable and as implemented by the user. They are one-dimensional. Each natural lake, reservoir, aquifer and wetland-area component (or sub-component) is modeled as a storage unit - a simple bathtub, but one whose longitudinal distribution of quantity and quality is not necessarily uniform. Within the accuracy provided by these simplifying assumptions, these DSSs attempt to address problems involving the interactions among watershed land uses, the quantity of ground and surface waters, the quality of surface waters, and the health of impacted ecosystems. These processes typically involve quite different time and space scales.


Authors: David Wood

Abstract: MIKE BASIN addresses water allocation, conjunctive use, reservoir operation, or water quality issues. It couples ArcGIS with hydrologic modeling to provide basin-scale solutions. The MIKE BASIN philosophy is to keep modeling simple and intuitive, yet provide in-depth insight for planning and management. In MIKE BASIN, the emphasis is on both simulation and visualization in both space and time, making it appropriate for building understanding and consensus. MIKE BASIN is a quasi-steady-state mass balance model, allowing for routed river flows. The water quality solution assumes purely advective transport. Decay during transport can be modeled. The groundwater description uses the linear reservoir equation. Typical areas of application include water availability analysis, conjunctive surface and groundwater use, infrastructure planning, assessing irrigation potential and reservoir performance, estimating water supply capacity, determining waste water treatment requirements. The model has also been used to analyze multisectoral domestic, industry, agriculture, hydropower, navigation, recreation, ecological demands and find equitable trade-offs among them. It has analyzed ecosystems and water quality, minimum discharge requirements, sustainable yield, effects of global change, regulation and water rights and priorities.

Title: RIBASIM River Basin Planning and Management Simulation Program

Authors: Delft Hydraulics

Abstract: RIBASIM (River Basin Simulation Model) is a generic model package for analyzing the behaviour of river basins under various hydrological conditions. The model package is a comprehensive and flexible tool which links the hydrological water inputs at various locations with the specific water-users in the basin. RIBASIM is designed for river basin planning and management RIBASIM follows a structured approach to river basin planning and management. RIBASIM enables the user to evaluate a variety of measures related to infrastructure, operational and demand management and the results in terms of water quantity and water quality. RIBASIM generates water distribution patterns and provides a basis for detailed water quality and sedimentation analyses in river reaches and reservoirs. It provides a source analysis, giving insight in the water's origin at any location of the basin. RIBASIM has a set of features which make it a state of the art river basin simulation package. The model has been applied for more than 20 years in a large number of countries and in a wide variety of projects. Water management organizations world-wide use it to support their management and planning activities. Large and complex river basins have been modelled and simulated with RIBASIM. Separately modelled subbasins can be combined into one main-basin. RIBASIM has a link with the HYMOS hydrological database and modelling system. For detailed water quality process RIBASIM can be linked with the Delft Hydraulics DELWAQ water quality model.

Title: Water resources management and water availability in the Elbe river basin under conditions of global change

Authors: S. Kaden, M. Kaltofen and H. Koch

Abstract: Global change challenges long-term planning in water management. Practical management requires plausible and consistent scenarios as well as assessments of possible climatic, technological and social developments and their impacts. These problems are subjects of research within the GLOWA Elbe II – project. The project’s goal is to develop a water management strategy for possible adaptation to global change in the Elbe river basin (about 150,000 km 2). One important component of the multi-disciplinary project is the analysis of conflicts related to water availability. For that purpose a detailed water management model for the whole Elbe river basin, including the Czech part of the basin, is under development. The model includes the main water uses and water management facilities. Special consideration has been given to wetlands as important water “user”. The amount of water use is partly determined by modules, which consider economical changes. Also in the model are functions for evaluating the monetary and non-monetary impacts associated with various degrees of fulfillment of the water demands. The simulation software uses the model WBalMo®. The WBalMo Elbe model consists of connected sub-models for major sub-basins, including the sub-model Elbe itself. The water yield is provided by a rainfall-runoff-model, which reflects not only climatic change but also changes in land use, especially by agriculture.

Title: WEAP Water Evaluation and Planning System

Authors: Jack Sieber

Abstract: WEAP is a microcomputer tool for integrated water resources planning. It provides a comprehensive, flexible and user-friendly framework for policy analysis. A growing number of water professionals are finding WEAP to be a useful addition to their toolbox of models, databases, spreadsheets and other software. This introduction summarizes WEAP’s purpose, approach and structure. A detailed technical description is available in a separate publication, the WEAP User Guide.