National Drought Mitigation Center

Locations Involved

United States

Low-Flow Studies

The NDMC collaborated with the National Weather Service on seven pilot projects from 2005-2010 to enhance the Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS). Currently, the AHPS system provides river flow/stage and forecast information at more than 3,600 forecasts points across the United States. Along with this information, AHPS also describes potential flood impacts that may occur near each forecast point. In order to expand the system to include low-flow information, pilot studies have been conducted in Minnesota’s Mississippi River Basin; the North Platte River Basin of Nebraska, Wyoming, and Colorado; the Upper Missouri River Basin in Montana and Wyoming; the Trinity River Basin in Texas; the Red and Souris River Basins of North Dakota and Montana; the Upper Colorado River Basin in the Western U.S.; and the ACT/ACF Basins in the Southeast U.S.

As part of this effort, the NDMC identified potential impacts of low river flows within the study areas through surveys of relevant local, state, and federal water administrators. Providing river flow and potential impact information allows communities, states, and federal interests to better understand their vulnerabilities and make more informed decisions when preparing for and responding to potentially hazardous situations.

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