David E. Rosenberg's research while affiliated with Utah State University and other places

Publications (46)

In the original version of this Article the author of reference #38 was incorrectly stated as Quinn, J. et al. This has been corrected to Xu, W. et al. in both the HTML and PDF versions.
There is broad interest to improve the reproducibility of published research. We developed a survey tool to assess the availability of digital research artifacts published alongside peer-reviewed journal articles (e.g. data, models, code, directions for use) and reproducibility of article results. We used the tool to assess 360 of the 1,989 articles published by six hydrology and water resources journals in 2017. Like studies from other fields, we reproduced results for only a small fraction of articles (1.6% of tested articles) using their available artifacts. We estimated, with 95% confidence, that results might be reproduced for only 0.6% to 6.8% of all 1,989 articles. Unlike prior studies, the survey tool identified key bottlenecks to making work more reproducible. Bottlenecks include: only some digital artifacts available (44% of articles), no directions (89%), or all artifacts available but results not reproducible (5%). The tool (or extensions) can help authors, journals, funders, and institutions to self-assess manuscripts, provide feedback to improve reproducibility, and recognize and reward reproducible articles as examples for others.
Current practices to identify, organize, analyze, and serve data to water resources systems models are typically model and dataset-specific. Data are stored in different formats, described with different vocabularies, and require manual, model-specific, and time-intensive manipulations to find, organize, compare, and then serve to models. This paper presents the Water Management Data Model (WaMDaM) implemented in a relational database. WaMDaM uses contextual metadata, controlled vocabularies, and supporting software tools to organize and store water management data from multiple sources and models and allow users to more easily interact with its database. Five use cases use thirteen datasets and models focused in the Bear River Watershed, United States to show how a user can identify, compare, and choose from multiple types of data, networks, and scenario elements then serve data to models. The database design is flexible and scalable to accommodate new datasets, models, and associated components, attributes, scenarios, and metadata.
Current practices to identify, organize, analyze, and serve data to water resources systems models are typically model and dataset-specific. Data are stored in different formats, described with different vocabularies, and require manual, model-specific, and time-intensive manipulations to find, organize, compare, and then serve to models. This paper presents the Water Management Data Model (WaMDaM) implemented in a relational database. WaMDaM uses contextual metadata, controlled vocabularies, and supporting software tools to organize and store water management data from multiple sources and models and allow users to more easily interact with its database. Five use cases use thirteen datasets and models focused in the Bear River Watershed, United States to show how a user can identify, compare, and choose from multiple types of data, networks, and scenario elements then serve data to models. The database design is flexible and scalable to accommodate new datasets, models, and associated components, attributes, scenarios, and metadata.
Forum papers are thought-provoking opinion pieces or essays founded in fact, sometimes containing speculation, on a civil engineering topic of general interest and relevance to the readership of the journal. The views expressed in this Forum article do not necessarily reflect the views of ASCE or the Editorial Board of the journal.
We present an inexpensive, open source, water metering system for measuring water use quantity and behavior at high temporal frequency. We demonstrate this technology in two high-traffic, public restrooms at Utah State University before and after installing high efficiency, automatic faucets and toilet flush valves. We also integrated an inexpensive sensor to count user traffic. Sensing restroom visits and water use events allowed us to identify fixture malfunctions, average water use per person, variability in use by fixtures (faucets versus urinals and toilets), variability in use by fixtures compared to manufacturer specifications, gender differences in use, and the difference in use after retrofit of the restrooms with high efficiency fixtures. The inexpensive metering system can help institutions remotely measure and record water use trends and behavior, identify leaks and fixture malfunctions, and schedule fixture maintenance or upgrades, all of which can ultimately help them meet goals for sustainable water use.
Modeling water resources networks is often input-intensive because of network size and complexity. This paper introduces a ranking automation for networks (RANK) tool that weights node connections based on flow capacity and direction and that automates the process to rank nodes that are stable, topologically significant, and redundant. Application to the 55-node, 73-link lower Bear River water system that stretches from southern Idaho to the Great Salt Lake, Utah shows that stable nodes do not depend on other nodes and are typically middle junctions; unstable nodes are located downstream. The most topologically significant nodes make other nodes unstable when added or removed, and they occur throughout the network. The most redundant node pairs have few but identical connections. Results can help water system modelers and planners identify and prioritize locations to (1) transfer water; (2) build, expand, remove, or abandon plans for dams; (3) adopt conservation measures; (4) develop alternative supplies; (5) monitor flows; and (6) protect environmental features. Network spatial resolution, link direction, and data used to weight links influence RANK results.
Water scarcity and invasive vegetation threaten arid-region wetlands and wetland managers seek ways to enhance wetland ecosystem services with limited water, labor, and financial resources. While prior systems modeling efforts have focused on water management to improve flow-based ecosystem and habitat objectives, here we consider water allocation and invasive vegetation management that jointly target the concurrent hydrologic and vegetation habitat needs of priority wetland bird species. We formulate a composite weighted usable area for wetlands (WU) objective function that represents the wetland surface area that provides suitable water level and vegetation cover conditions for priority bird species. Maximizing the WU is subject to constraints such as water balance, hydraulic infrastructure capacity, invasive vegetation growth and control, and a limited financial budget to control vegetation. We apply the model at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge on the Great Salt Lake, Utah, compare model-recommended management actions to past Refuge water and vegetation control activities, and find that managers can almost double the area of suitable habitat by more dynamically managing water levels and managing invasive vegetation in August at the beginning of the window for control operations. Scenario and sensitivity analyses show the importance to jointly consider hydrology and vegetation system components rather than only the hydrological component.
Smart metering technologies allow for gathering high resolution water demand data in the residential sector, opening up new opportunities for the development of models describing water consumers’ behaviors. Yet, gathering such accurate water demand data at the end-use level is limited by metering intrusiveness, costs, and privacy issues. In this paper, we contribute a stochastic simulation model for synthetically generating high-resolution time series of water use at the end-use level. Each water end-use fixture in our model is characterized by its signature (i.e., its typical single-use pattern), as well as frequency distributions of its number of uses per day, single use duration, time of use during the day, and contribution to the total household water demand. The model relies on statistical data from a real-world metering campaign across 9 cities in the US. Showcasing our model outputs, we demonstrate the potential usability of this model for characterizing the water end-use demands of different communities, as well as for analyzing the major components of peak demand and performing scenario analysis.
Urbanization, climate, and ecosystem change represent major challenges for managing water resources. Although water systems are complex, a need exists for a generalized representation of these systems to identify important components and linkages to guide scientific inquiry and aid water management. We developed an integrated Structure-Actor-Water framework (iSAW) to facilitate the understanding of and transitions to sustainable water systems. Our goal was to produce an interdisciplinary framework for water resources research that could address management challenges across scales (e.g., plot to region) and domains (e.g., water supply and quality, transitioning, and urban landscapes). The framework was designed to be generalizable across all human–environment systems, yet with sufficient detail and flexibility to be customized to specific cases. iSAW includes three major components: structure (natural, built, and social), actors (individual and organizational), and water (quality and quantity). Key linkages among these components include: (1) ecological/hydrologic processes, (2) ecosystem/geomorphic feedbacks, (3) planning, design, and policy, (4) perceptions, information, and experience, (5) resource access and risk, and (6) operational water use and management. We illustrate the flexibility and utility of the iSAW framework by applying it to two research and management problems: understanding urban water supply and demand in a changing climate and expanding use of green storm water infrastructure in a semi-arid environment. The applications demonstrate that a generalized conceptual model can identify important components and linkages in complex and diverse water systems and facilitate communication about those systems among researchers from diverse disciplines.
State-of-the-art systems analysis techniques focus on efficiently finding optimal solutions. Yet an optimal solution is optimal only for the modelled issues and managers often seek near-optimal alternatives that address un-modelled objectives, preferences, limits, uncertainties, and other issues. Early on, Modelling to Generate Alternatives (MGA) formalized near-optimal as performance within a tolerable deviation from the optimal objective function value and identified a few maximally-different alternatives that addressed select un-modelled issues. This paper presents new stratified, Monte Carlo Markov Chain sampling and parallel coordinate plotting tools that generate and communicate the structure and extent of the near-optimal region to an optimization problem. Interactive plot controls allow users to explore region features of most interest. Controls also streamline the process to elicit un-modelled issues and update the model formulation in response to elicited issues. Use for an example, single-objective, linear water quality management problem at Echo Reservoir, Utah identifies numerous and flexible practices to reduce the phosphorus load to the reservoir and maintain close-to-optimal performance. Flexibility is upheld by further interactive alternative generation, transforming the formulation into a multi-objective problem, and relaxing the tolerance parameter to expand the near-optimal region. Compared to MGA, the new blended tools generate more numerous alternatives faster, more fully show the near-optimal region, and help elicit a larger set of un-modelled issues. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Water resources data for a particular area of interest are generally scattered across numerous providers, managers and scientists. We present a data model to organize water management data to overcome the semantic (i.e., data terms) and syntactic (i.e., data structure and organization) heterogeneity of this data. The Water Management Data Model (WaM-DaM) presents a set of proposed specifications for a generic, relational, and open-source data model to support water management and hydrologic modeling. The design of WaM-DaM allows the user to construct networks comprised of nodes and links from a set of user defined/customized objects. Model objects can represent components of a water management networks like reservoirs and rivers as well as all their associated data including operations to satisfy demands. The data model organizes data values for formats like parameters, multi-column arrays, and time series. WaM-DaM also supports structured metadata fields that describe for whom, where, and how data for the components were collected. WaM-DaM enforces a set of controlled vocabulary on the names of object and attributes and other features to facilitate data interoperability among models and maintain consistency and homogeneity of metadata. To demonstrate these features to organize and synthesize data and metadata from multiple sources with different formats, we implement WaM-DaM in a relational database for a simple three-node network in the Little Bear River Watershed, Utah. Results show that WaM-DaM organized reservoir data and metadata from four different sources and thus allowed the user to quickly compare values of reservoir attributes with their descriptive metadata like unit and source using one database query. Ongoing work will test WaM-DaM with larger networks and other data sources to further demonstrate and test its capabilities and show the generality and flexibility of its design. Future work also will develop stored procedures of database queries to automate importing data into WaM-DaM and then export it to several water management models in the required semantics and format.
Successfully managing wetlands requires monitoring changes in plant community composition. We used remote sensing techniques to document the replacement of desirable native wetland vegetation with invasive species in response to catastrophic flood disturbance in the 1980s and to evaluate wetland vegetation management between 1998 and 2010. We conducted our study at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge wetlands, which are located on the northeastern arm of the Great Salt Lake in northern Utah. We acquired high-resolution airborne multispectral imagery of the refuge in 1992 and 2010 to quantify changes in vegetation cover over time. We produced classified vegetation maps for the years 1992 and 2010 to calculate vegetation and water cover in management units. Classification results indicate that invasive vegetation is fast replacing native species in areas adjacent to the water delivery canals. We also compared vege tation changes to historical data provided by refuge managers, and these data contained information about the management activities undertaken in the wetland units over the study period. We found that the managers’ efforts to control the expansion of invasive species—such as keeping the units full of water throughout the year, adjusting water depth to manage salinity levels and aquatic vegetation, and undertaking burning or mechanical disturbance when needed—were successful in most of the units, although some units were still invaded by undesirable plants. Here we demonstrate how wetland managers can use remote sensing and historical data of vegetation cover to understand which native plant species are most susceptible to replacement by invasive species, how vegetation responds to management actions, and ultimately how managers can promote diverse plant communities with high wildlife value.
The use of interactive video conferencing (IVC) and related technologies to teach courses over the Internet is becoming more common. The typical model for a distance-learning course is a single instructor teaches students distributed in remote locations connected via IVC technology and a web-based learning management system to facilitate interactions. Our approach extends this model to include several instructors co-located with students at multiple locations (three locations in our case: Utah State University, the University of Utah, and Brigham Young University, who partnered to develop and offer a new, joint course on hydroinformatics to predominantly civil engineering graduate students at the three partner universities). The course was offered in the Fall 2012 semester to 28 students. This paper describes the novel approaches used in the course, the challenges and benefits associated with the use of IVC technology across multiple universities, the effectiveness of IVC for student learning, and the complications and benefits of having multiple instructors. Novel approaches include having separate instructors and assessment at each site while sharing course content, live lectures, and discussion forums. Challenges identified include originating content from multiple locations, building rapport with remote students, communicating effectively within a multiple-classroom environment, engaging local and remote students, stimulating critical thinking during lectures and demonstrations, and addressing different institutional regulations and students at each university. Benefits include the efficiency of involving multiple instructors through IVC and sharing their combined knowledge and expertise with students at different universities. Students were surveyed at the midpoint of the semester and after the course concluded to solicit their assessment of the effectiveness of course content and delivery techniques. Instructors self-assessed the course conduct at the midpoint and conclusion to reflect on the effectiveness of course materials, delivery techniques, and student learning. We used the results gathered in this initial offering to identify areas to improve the delivery in subsequent offerings using this new team teaching IVC model. Specifically, we concluded the need to increase active learning and critical thinking when using IVC and to vary learning activities to include non-IVC elements and individual institution elements.
The size and complexity of water resources networks typically require a large number of computationally intensive simulations to test effects of changes in network structure or management. Current tools can only visualize the effects of a few changes. Here, we introduce a new method and tool that uses parallel coordinates to simultaneously visualize large water resources networks and identify nodes that are (1) vulnerable (their connectivity depends on the existence of particular nodes); (2) topologically significant (when removed or added to the network, they cause other nodes to be vulnerable); and (3) redundant. We apply the tool to the 56-node lower Bear River water system that stretches from southern Idaho to the Great Salt Lake, Utah. Nodes that are connected to only one other node are the most vulnerable, including Great Salt Lake, Malad River, and Evaporation from Hyrum Reservoir. The three most topologically significant nodes are Cutler and the two junctions connecting the South Cache Valley and the Weber branches to the rest of the network. There are five highly redundant node pairs with more than 96% of the same connections including the Cache Valley Irrigation and Cache Valley New Municipal and Industrial service areas. This redundancy suggests that Cache Valley Irrigation is a promising source to transfer water from agriculture to urban use. The New Box Elder County Irrigation and South Cache Irrigation service areas have very low topological significance ranks and suggest that these irrigation areas may also be promising sources of water transfers. Our tool can also suggest candidate locations for dam removal (reservoirs with low topological significance or high redundancy); areas most benefiting from conservation measures (vulnerable nodes); and locations for monitoring (vulnerable nodes). Future work with this tool should incorporate flow direction and magnitude. The results of our tool can direct detailed simulation studies and sensitivity analysis. The tool scales to very large networks and identifies the most promising nodes to subsequently focus computationally-intensive simulation and sensitivity analysis efforts.
The Weber River Basin in north-central Utah covers an area of about 2,460 square miles in Davis, Weber, Morgan Counties, and a portion of Summit County. The Weber River has several major tributaries, including Beaver Creek, Chalk Creek, Lost Creek, East Canyon Creek, and the Ogden River. The Basin has seven on-stream reservoirs and one off-stream reservoir, which supply major population centers such as the city of Ogden and irrigated lands along the Wasatch Front. In this case study activity, students will use the Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) system to simulate and determine appropriate reservoir carryover storage policies in the Weber River Basin, Utah. Specifically, students will enter demand and reservoir data to complete a WEAP systems model for the Weber River Basin; specify several scenarios representing different reservoir storage and release policies; simulate the effects of the different policies; and identify the resulting reservoir storages and allocation of shortages to water demand sites.
This study develops and applies a simple linear optimization program to identify cost-effective best management practices (BMPs) to reduce phosphorus loading in Echo Reservoir, Utah. The optimization program tests the feasibility of proposed total maximum daily load (TMDL) allocations based on potential BMP options and provides information regarding the spatial redistribution of loads among sub-watersheds. The current version of the TMDL for Echo Reservoir allocates phosphorus loads to existing non-point phosphorus sources in different sub-watersheds to meet a specified total load. Optimization results show that it is feasible to implement BMPs for non-point sources in each sub-watershed to meet reduction targets at a cost of $1.0 million. However, relaxing these targets can achieve the overall target at lower cost. The optimization program and results provide a simple tool to test the feasibility of proposed TMDL allocations based on potential BMP options and can also recommend spatial redistributions of loads among sub-watersheds to lower costs.
Behavior and technological impacts on residential indoor water use and conservation efforts in the United States are identified. Preexisting detailed end-use data was collected before and after toilets, faucets, showerheads, and clothes washers were retrofitted in 96 owner-occupied, single-family households in Oakland, California; Seattle, Washington; and Tampa, Florida, between 2000 and 2003. Water volume, duration of use, and time of use were recorded and disaggregated by appliance for two weeks before and four weeks after appliances were retrofitted. For each appliance, observed differences in water use before and after retrofits are compared to water savings predicted by simple analytical, regression, and hybrid models. Comparisons identify prediction precision among models. Results show that observed and predicted distributions of water savings are skewed with a small number of households showing potential to save more water. Regression and hybrid model results also show the relative and significant influence on water saved of both technological (flow rates of appliances) and behavioral (length of use, frequency of use) factors. Additionally, regression results suggest the number of residents, performance, and the frequency of appliance use are key factors that distinguish households that save the most water from households that save less. Study results help improve engineering methods to estimate water savings from retrofits and allow water utilities to better target subcategories of households that have potential to save more water.
Water energy linkages have received growing attention from the water and energy utilities as utilities recognize that collaborative efforts can implement more effective conservation and efficiency improvement programs at lower cost with less effort. To date, limited energy-water household data has allowed only deterministic analysis for average, representative households and required coarse assumptions - like the water heater (the primary energy use in a home apart from heating and cooling) be a single end use. Here, we use recent available disaggregated hot and cold water household end-use data to estimate water and energy consumption for toilet, shower, faucet, dishwasher, laundry machine, leaks, and other household uses and savings from appliance retrofits. The disaggregated hot water and bulk water end-use data was previously collected by the USEPA for 96 single family households in Seattle WA and Oakland CA, and Tampa FL between the period from 2000 and 2003 for two weeks before and four weeks after each household was retrofitted with water efficient appliances. Using the disaggregated data, we developed a stochastic model that represents factors that influence water use for each appliance: behavioral (use frequency and duration), demographical (household size), and technological (use volume or flowrate). We also include stochastic factors that govern energy to heat hot water: hot water fraction (percentage of hot water volume to total water volume used in a certain end-use event), heater water intake and dispense temperatures, and energy source for the heater (gas, electric, etc). From the empirical household end-use data, we derive stochastic probability distributions for each water and energy factor where each distribution represents the range and likelihood of values that the factor may take. The uncertainty of the stochastic water and energy factors is propagated using Monte Carlo simulations to calculate the composite probability distribution for water and energy use, potential savings, and payback periods to install efficient water end-use appliances and fixtures. Stochastic model results show the distributions among households for (i) water end-use, (ii) energy consumed to use water, and (iii) financial payback periods. Compared to deterministic analysis, stochastic modeling results show that hot water fractions for appliances follow normal distributions with high standard deviation and reveal pronounced variations among households that significantly affect energy savings and payback period estimates. These distributions provide an important tool to select and size water conservation programs to simultaneously meet both water and energy conservation goals. They also provide a way to identify and target a small fraction of customers with potential to save large water volumes and energy from appliance retrofits. Future work will embed this household scale stochastic model in city-scale models to identify win-win water management opportunities where households save money by conserving water and energy while cities avoid costs, downsize, or delay infrastructure development.
Seven decades of extractions have dramatically reduced Jordan River flows, lowered the Dead Sea level, opened sink holes, and caused other environmental problems. The fix Jordan, Israel, and the Palestinians propose would build an expensive multipurpose conveyance project from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea that would also generate hydropower and desalinate water. This paper compares the Red-Dead project to alternatives that may also raise the Dead Sea level. Hydro-economic model results for the Jordan-Israel-Palestinian inter-tied water systems show two restoration alternatives are more economically viable than the proposed Red-Dead project. Many decentralized new supply, wastewater reuse, conveyance, conservation, and leak reduction projects and programs in each country can together increase economic benefits and reliably deliver up to 900 MCM yr-1 to the Dead Sea. Similarly, a smaller Red-Dead project that only generates hydropower can deliver large flows to the Dead Sea when the sale price of generated electricity is sufficiently high. However, for all restoration options, net benefits fall and water scarcity rises as flows to the Dead Sea increase. This finding suggests (i) each country has no individual incentive to return water to the Dead Sea, and (ii) outside institutions that seek to raise the Dead must also offer countries direct incentives to deliver water to the Sea besides building the countries new infrastructure.
Rosenberg, David E., Kelly Kopp, Heidi A. Kratsch, Larry Rupp, Paul Johnson, and Roger Kjelgren, 2011. Value Landscape Engineering: Identifying Costs, Water Use, Labor, and Impacts to Support Landscape Choice. Journal of the American Water Resources Association (JAWRA) 47(3):635-649. DOI: 10.1111/j.1752-1688.2011.00530.x Abstract: We present a spreadsheet model that identifies the costs, water, labor, fertilizer, pesticides, fuel, energy, carbon emissions, and particulates required of and generated by a user-specified residential or commercial landscape over its economic life. This life includes site preparation, materials purchase, installation, annual maintenance and replacing landscape features that wear out or die. Users provide a variety of site-descriptive information and the model queries an extensive database of landscape data to calculate costs, required inputs, and impacts. We verified model results against observations of water, labor, fertilizer, and fuel use over eight years at three landscapes in the Salt Lake City, Utah metropolitan region. We use the model to show tradeoffs in costs and required inputs for a predominately cool-season turfgrass landscape typical for Salt Lake City and other high desert, intermountain western United States cities and potential modifications to that typical landscape. Results highlight strategies water conservation programs can use to encourage property owners to install and adopt water-conserving landscape features and practices. Residential and commercial landscapers, landscape architects, contractors, and property owners can also model current and proposed landscapes and use results to identify a low-cost, low-input landscape that achieves their client’s or their own goals and values.
Groundwater is the only freshwater source available for the Gaza Strip of Palestine, but Gaza groundwater is heavily polluted from agricultural activities and seawater intrusion. Water resource planners therefore have to find innovative alternate sources of water to minimize existing and future deficits. Possible management options include the use of treated wastewater (TWW), desalination, and conveyance of water between locations based on the demand. However, these options require significant funding and therefore, economic evaluation. Sophisticated economic and mathematical tools are now available that allow such analyses. A water allocation system model was used to economically evaluate various options for the projected water demands in 2010, 2020, and 2030. Results show that the use of TWW in agriculture can significantly increase net benefits and reduce water prices. However, any reduction in groundwater pumping can impact net benefits and increase water prices if additional supply is not found. Similar observations were made with the shadow value of water. However, water deficits cannot be accommodated with the existing supply including the use of TWW in agriculture. A combination of TWW use and desalination can increase the supply in an economically competitive manner while reducing groundwater pumping to minimize seawater intrusion. The increased net benefits and profits derived from such supply enhancements surpass the costs to rebuild and maintain the required infrastructure for the Gaza Strip.
Seven decades of extractions have dramatically reduced Jordan River flows, lowered the Dead Sea level, opened sink holes, and caused other environmental problems. The fix Jordan, Israel, and the Palestinians propose would build an expensive multipurpose canal from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea that would also generate hydropower and desalinated water. This paper compares the Red-Dead project to alternatives that may also raise the Dead Sea level. Hydro-economic model results for the Jordan-Israel-Palestinian inter-tied water systems show two restoration alternatives are more economically viable than the proposed Red-Dead project. Many decentralized new supply, wastewater reuse, conveyance, conservation, and leak reduction projects and programs in each country can together increase economic benefits and reliably deliver up to 900 MCM/year to the Dead Sea. Similarly, a smaller Red-Dead project that only generates hydropower can deliver large flows to the Dead Sea when the sale price of generated electricity is sufficiently high. However, for all restoration options, net benefits fall and water scarcity rises as flows to the Dead Sea increase. This finding suggests (i) each country has no individual incentive to return water to the Dead Sea, and (ii) outside institutions that seek to raise the Dead must also offer countries direct incentives to deliver water to the Sea besides building the countries new infrastructure.
In terms of per-capita availability of renewable water resources, Jordan is one of the most water-scarce countries in the world. Amman, the capital of Jordan, has grown rapidly in the past 50 years, and its internal water resources can no longer meet the needs of its burgeoning population. Per capita water use in Amman is much less than that of its American or European counterparts, with further efforts in water conservation and demand management necessary for the long-term sustainability of the system. Major water works have come online in the past decade, and with rapid population growth and economic development, other, larger-still water works are under way. In the past 5 years alone, the water supply situation has changed so rapidly for Amman as to make the data of 2004 essentially obsolete. This report presents the current state of the water resources system in the Greater Amman Area (GAA) with an emphasis on the purview of Miyahuna, the Jordan Water Company.
This study presents a systems modeling methodology to determine the quantity of water to supply among wetland units to increase ecological performance. Ecological performance is measured by a parameter defined as weighted usable area for wetlands (WUAW). The WUAW represents the surface area available that provides suitable condition to reach specific wetland management goals and is measured in square meters. The systems model considers water depth, flow duration, and vegetation coverage as decisions variables to improve wetland performance. Input data include water depth/area relationships in individual wetland units, wetland water distribution network of canals and remote sensing images. Hydrological and ecological decisions are limited by water availability, spatial connectivity, and hydraulic infrastructure. These decision variables, performance indicators, and constraints were identified through participatory meetings and discussions with wetland managers at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge (BRMBR). The BRMBR is located on the northeast side of Great Salt Lake, Utah and constitutes one of the most important habitats for migratory birds for the Pacific and Central Flyway of North America. The study showcases a methodology to allocate water to improve ecological benefits in wetlands.
Econometricians have long studied the effect of price on residential water demand and the impact on water use of the rate (tariff) structure in which price signals are embedded. This paper applies an existing deductive model of residential water use for the intermittent supply system in Amman, Jordan and simulates demand responses across a cross section of households over many uniform, increasing block, and linear price (quadratic charge) rate structures at historically low and significantly higher prices. Results show inelastic piped water demand responses for all rate structures at historically low prices similar to findings from a prior econometric study for Amman. However, piped water demand turns more elastic when prices rise above $0.50/m3 with uniform rates showing the most elastic response. But results also highlight several complications to determine and interpret price elasticity of demand under different rate structures. They also illustrate trade-offs among rate structures and rate structure components for key rate-setting objectives such as to encourage water conservation, recover costs, promote efficiency, and more equitably allocate costs among users.
We include demands for water of different salinity concentrations as input parameters and decision variables in a regional hydrologic-economic optimization model. This specification includes separate demand functions for saline water. We then use non-linear programming to jointly identify the benefit maximizing set of infrastructure expansions, operational allocations, and use of different water quality types under different groundwater availability scenarios. We modify the Water Allocation System (WAS) model (Fisher et al., 2005; Rosenberg et al., 2008) to include demands for saline water and present a detailed application for the Gaza Strip and West Bank, Palestine. The application considers allocating and transferring water of different qualities among agricultural, industrial, and urban sectors and among districts, plus building desalination, waste-water treatment plants, and conveyance pipelines. Model results shows that esalination of the existing brackish water to fresh water level may be economically beneficial for the Gaza Strip districts. That is, the difference between the shadow value of saline and fresh water, in the Gaza Strip districts, is greater than ($0.25/m3). The cost of treating brackish water to fresh water level is ($0.25/m3). Including demands for saline water generates higher net benefits than when considering only demands for fresh and recycled water. Model results show that the difference in the shadow values of freshwater among west bank districts is larger than conveyance costs between the districts. So, conveying freshwater may be beneficial. Similarly for saline water. Results show that desalination of sea water in Gaza to saline level, and brackish water to freshwater in the West Bank, may be beneficial when water is scarce (at 58% reduction in abstraction). Saline WAS model finds the proper size of sea water desalination to saline level. This size increases proportionally with reduced abstraction from Gaza aquifer. A reduction in groundwater abstraction beyond 60% produced a negative profit.
We include demands for water of different salinity concentrations as input parameters and decision variables in a regional hydro-economic optimization model. This specification includes separate demand functions for saline water. We then use stochastic non-linear programming to jointly identify the benefit maximizing set of infrastructure expansions, operational allocations, and use of different water quality types under climate variability. We present a detailed application for the Gaza Strip. The application considers building desalination and waste-water treatment plants and conveyance pipelines, initiating water conservation and leak reduction programs, plus allocating and transferring water of different qualities among agricultural, industrial, and urban sectors and among districts. Results show how to integrate a mix of supply enhancement, conservation, water quality improvement, and water quality management actions into a portfolio that can economically and efficiently respond to changes and uncertainties in surface and groundwater availability due to climate variability. We also show how to put drawn-down and saline Gaza aquifer water to more sustainable and economical use.
Water shortages from intermittent public supplies are a major and expanding problem in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Yet individual users, utility managers, and government officials can improve access or cope with shortages in many ways. New supplies, more efficient use of existing resources, long-term investments to expand infrastructure and reduce leakage, and short-term measures to flexibly transfer, ration, or curtail some uses represent several different approaches for management. This paper reviews three separate systems analysis that use stochastic optimization with recourse. Analysis for individual residential users, the water utility serving 2.2 million residents in the capital Amman, and the entire kingdom comprising Amman and 11 other governorates identify complementary actions to be undertaken by individual users, utility managers, and government officials.
Future water management will shift from building new water supply systems to better operating existing ones. The variation of water values in time and space will increasingly motivate efforts to address water scarcity and reduce water conflicts. Hydro-economic models represent spatially distributed water resource systems, infrastructure, management options and economic values in an integrated manner. In these tools water allocations and management are either driven by the economic value of water or economically evaluated to provide policy insights and reveal opportunities for better management. A central concept is that water demands are not fixed requirements but rather functions where quantities of water use at different times have varying total and marginal economic values. This paper reviews techniques to characterize the economic value of water use and include such values in mathematical models. We identify the key steps in model design and diverse problems, formulations, levels of integration, spatial and temporal scales, and solution techniques addressed and used by over 80 hydro-economic modeling efforts dating back 45-years from 23 countries. We list current limitations of the approach, suggest directions for future work, and recommend ways to improve policy relevance.
A grey number is an uncertain number with fixed lower and upper bounds but unknown distribution. Grey numbers find use in optimization to systematically and proactively incorporate uncertainties expressed as intervals plus communicate resulting stable, feasible ranges for the objective function and decision variables. This article critically reviews their use in linear and stochastic programs with recourse. It summarizes grey model formulation and solution algorithms. It advances multiple counter-examples that yield risk-prone grey solutions that perform worse than a worst-case analysis and do not span the stable feasible range of the decision space. The article suggests reasons for the poor performance and identifies conditions for which it typically occurs. It also identifies a fundamental shortcoming of grey stochastic programming with recourse and suggests new solution algorithms that give more risk-adverse solutions. The review also helps clarify the important advantages, disadvantages, and distinctions between risk-prone and risk-adverse grey-programming and best/worst case analysis.
Stochastic mixed-integer optimization is used to identify a portfolio of long- and short-term supply and conservation actions for a municipal water system to cost-effectively accommodate a distribution of water shortages. Alternative robust, grey-number, and best/worst case formulations systematically explore implications of uncertainties in action costs, life spans, water volumes gained or saved, shortage levels, and shortage probabilities. A detailed example for Amman, Jordan considers 23 potential actions. Results show: (1) remarkable consistency occurs across the different modeling approaches. (2) Conserving water—reducing leakage and targeting select customers to install water efficient appliances—plays an important and growing role over time. (3) A delayed need for large supply projects like pumping the Disi aquifer. (4) No role appears for seawater desalination (Red–Dead Canal) before 2040. (5) Desalinating brackish Zara-Ma’een water is the low-cost option to increase water availability to customers but requires substantial capital investments. And (6) two shortcomings arise for grey-number and best/worst case approaches.
Intermittent access to improved urban water supplies is a large and expanding global problem. This paper describes 16 supply enhancement and 23 demand management actions available to urban residential water users in Jordan to cope with intermittent supplies. We characterize actions by implementation, costs, and water quantities and qualities acquired or conserved. This effort systematically identifies potential options prior to detailed study and shows that water users have significant capacity to affect demand. We suggest several methods to evaluate options and highlight the need to include local water management decisions in integrated water resources management and planning at utility and regional scales.
1] A regional hydroeconomic model is developed to include demand shifts from nonprice water conservation programs as input parameters and decision variables. Stochastic nonlinear programming then jointly identifies the benefit-maximizing portfolio of conservation and leak reduction programs, infrastructure expansions, and operational allocations under variable water availability. We present a detailed application for 12 governorates in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. It considers targeted installations of water-efficient appliances, leak reduction in the distribution system, surface and groundwater development, seawater desalination, conveyance, and wastewater treatment projects. Results show that (1) water conservation by urban users generates substantial regional benefits and can delay infrastructure expansions; (2) some rationing and conjunctive use operations smooth operations during droughts; (3) a broad mix of source developments, conveyance expansions, and leak reduction programs can forestall the need for desalination; (4) the Disi carrier to Amman should include a large branch to Karak; and (5) increasing conveyance from Ma'an, Irbid, and Mafraq can avert impending crises in the neighboring districts of Tafelah, Ajloun, and Zarqa.
1] We apply systems analysis to estimate household water use in an intermittent supply system considering numerous interdependent water user behaviors. Some 39 household actions include conservation; improving local storage or water quality; and accessing sources having variable costs, availabilities, reliabilities, and qualities. A stochastic optimization program with recourse decisions identifies the infrastructure investments and short-term coping actions a customer can adopt to cost-effectively respond to a probability distribution of piped water availability. Monte Carlo simulations show effects for a population of customers. Model calibration reproduces the distribution of billed residential water use in Amman, Jordan. Parametric analyses suggest economic and demand responses to increased availability and alternative pricing. It also suggests potential market penetration for conservation actions, associated water savings, and subsidies to entice further adoption. We discuss new insights to size, target, and finance conservation.
An analytical method is derived to describe the distribution of water quantity saved among customers within a water-use sector who adopt a water conservation action. Analytical results tend toward lognormal distributions with long tails, quantifying a smaller subset of customers that show potential to achieve large savings. Example effectiveness distributions are shown for seven long-term conservation actions potentially implemented by urban, domestic water users in Amman, Jordan. Monte Carlo simulations verify the analytical derivations. The probabilistic outputs contrast with common methods that estimate conservation action effectiveness as a product of typical (average) characteristics for disaggregated customer groups. Implications to size water conservation programs to meet conservation objectives and target customers to adopt conservation actions are discussed.
We present an economic-engineering method to estimate urban water use demands with intermittent water supplies. A two-stage, probabilistic optimization formulation includes a wide variety of water supply enhancement and conservation actions that individual households can adopt to meet multiple water quality uses with uncertain water availability. We embed the optimization in Monte-Carlo simulations to show aggregate effects at a utility (citywide) scale for a population of user conditions and decisions. Parametric analysis provides derivations of supply curves to subsidize conservation, demand responses to alternative pricing, and customer willingness-to-pay to avoid shortages. Results show a good empirical fit for the average and distribution of billed residential water use in Amman, Jordan. Additional outputs give likely market penetration rates for household conservation actions, associated water savings, and subsidies required to entice further adoption. We discuss new insights to size, target, market, and finance conservation programs and interpret a demand curve with block pricing.
Six balancing rules are derived to inform short-term drawdown and recharge of water in multiple, unconnected aquifers. Management objectives are: 1 minimizing costs; 2 maximizing duration of operation; and 3 maximizing accessibility as a tradeoff between maximizing instantaneous withdrawal rate and the duration to sustain withdrawals. Engineering optimization formulations use either a specified target delivery rate for withdrawals or available surface water supply to recharge. Aquifers are modeled as separate, single-celled basins with lumped parameters representing key physical, institutional, and financial characteristics. Each formulation is solved analytically for the case where constraints are nonbinding. Solutions are explained as operating rules. Two examples confirm the analytical solutions. The results show how cost characteristics, fraction of recharged water available for withdrawal fractional recovery, initial storage, maximum recharge and pumping rates, and uncertainties regarding the future availability of water for extraction influence recharge and withdrawal decisions.
Shaded cacao (Theobroma cacao) cultivation is a tropical land-use that has potential to reduce pressure on the forest and provide additional income to smallholder growers. A land-use system (LUS) model was formulated to represent the economic returns derived from shaded cacao production practiced by smallholders in the Toledo district of Belize. Sixty scenarios were tested to elicit response of net-present-value (NPV), returns to labor, and annual returns to land (ARTL) to individual changes in 10 system parameters. Further scenarios tested the combined interactions between hardwood shade tree type, planting density, time to harvest hardwoods, cacao cultivation practice, and expected output. As a modeling exercise, LUS analysis highlights system components that government agencies, donors, NGOs, extension agents, and smallholders should target with policies, agri-silvi- culture projects, and further research. Results identify more favorable credit, labor-saving technology, better shade-management practices, grafting, and incorporating non-hardwood shade trees and laurel (Cordia alliadora) as interventions that could improve cacao financial performance and encourage adoption. At present, the model cannot predict whether smallholders would respond to recommendations and invest in shaded cacao cultivation in lieu of alternative agricultural land-uses or off-farm employment.

Citations

Top co-authors (50)

Adel M. Abdallah
  • Western States Water Council
Jay Lund
  • University of California, Davis
Jagath Kaluarachchi
  • Utah State University
Ahmed E. Al-Juaidi
  • King Abdulaziz University
Karin M. Kettenring
  • Utah State University
Jeffery S. Horsburgh
  • Utah State University
Omar Alminagorta
  • Utah State University
Kaveh Madani
  • Imperial College London
James Howard Stagge
  • The Ohio State University
Nour Atallah
  • Utah State University

Affiliations

Utah State University
Department
  • Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of California, Davis
Department
  • Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Department of Human and Community Development

Publication Stats

Citations
682
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