Whole Watershed Health and Restoration: Applying the Patuxent and Gwynns Falls Landscape Models to Designing a Sustainable Balance Between Humans and the Rest of NatureEPA Grant Number: R827169
Title: Whole Watershed Health and Restoration: Applying the Patuxent and Gwynns Falls Landscape Models to Designing a Sustainable Balance Between Humans and the Rest of Nature
Investigators: Costanza, Robert , Boumans, Roelof , Maxwell, Thomas , Villa, Ferdinando , Voinov, Alexey , Wainger, Lisa
Institution: University of Maryland
EPA Project Officer: Hiscock, Michael
Project Period: March 1, 1999 through February 28, 2001
Project Amount: $699,916
RFA: Water and Watersheds (1998) RFA Text | Recipients Lists
Research Category: Water , Water and Watersheds
Description:As part of an EPA/NSF funded project we have developed an integrated, spatially-explicit model of the Patuxent watershed, MD. We are also expanding and applying this model to the Gwynns Falls watershed in urban Baltimore as part of the NSF funded Baltimore Urban LTER project. These models and their associated data bases give us a unique capability to test various policy scenarios and ecosystem restoration options at the whole watershed scale, for both a largely rural/suburban watershed (the Patuxent) and a largely urban/commercial watershed (Gwynns Falls).
a. further develop and test the socioeconomic sectors and their dynamic links to the ecological sectors.
b. apply the approach to the Gwynns Falls watershed and intercompare with the Patuxent.
c. perform detailed scenario analyses including a range of spatial pattern, management, policy, and climate options.
Approach:In this project, we will:
- Define and test ecosystem health indicators for watersheds - using a mediated workshop process to integrate science-based indices and stakeholder-based preferences.
- Explore alternative scenarios using the integrated Patuxent Landscape Model (PLM) and the Gwynns Falls Landscape Model (GFLM).
- Use a Multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) approach to formally analyze the scenarios and their trade-offs.
- Use a web-based interactive framework to extend the discussions to the larger stakeholder community. This will occur at all stages, including the definition of ecosystem health, the selection and analysis of scenarios, the application of the MCDA analysis, and the implementation of management policies.
Expected Results:The proposed research will increase capabilities in several areas critical to watershed-based management and ecological restoration, including:
- Development of useful and workable indicators and the ability to assess the ecological health of whole watersheds.
- Development of the ability to assess the relative effects of various spatially explicit policy and management options on ecosystem health at the whole watershed scale. This is critical to developing the ability to address non-point sources of nutrients and other pollutants.
- Development of the ability to design effective whole watershed restoration strategies.