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Keywords:

  • watershed;
  • nutrients;
  • water quality;
  • distributed;
  • GSSHA

Abstract: A primary water quality problem caused by non-point source pollution (NPSP) is eutrophication, from excess nutrients in receiving water bodies. The control of nutrients arising from NPSP is difficult because the source areas can be hard to identify and typical treatment methods are infeasible due to the distributed nature of the pollutants. It may be possible to reduce nutrient related water quality problems through the restoration of highly disturbed watersheds with best management practices (BMPs). While restoration attempts may provide significant returns, they can be costly to implement and often are met with resistance in agricultural communities. Extending model results beyond the range of calibration to model future conditions such as for restoration scenarios requires the use of physically-based models that include the important processes that generate streamflow and material transport, uptake, loss, transformation, and recycling of nutrients and other material. The research and development objectives of the US. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) in Vicksburg, Mississippi, are to develop a watershed assessment and management model to simulate transport, uptake, loss, transformation, and recycling of nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus and associated material such as sediment and organic matter. In this study we will discuss current efforts at the ERDC's Environmental Laboratory to develop a state-of-the-art watershed water quality model.