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Whole Watershed Modeling

About Our Models

Whole Watershed Modeling (WWM) creates spatially and temporally explicit representations of the combined human and natural processes which significantly affect the supply and demand for water within a complete river basin. Such processes include climate and climate change, evapotranspiration, wildfire, agriculture, irrigation, reservoir operations, population changes, municipal withdrawals and returns, land-use changes, water law, and public policy. Outputs from the model include tables, maps and charts of stream flows, irrigation and municipal withdrawals and returns, evapotranspiration, land use/land cover changes, and regulatory water right shutoffs.

Freshwater has used the Envision modeling framework from Oregon State University as the backbone of two WWMs for the Willamette River Basin in Oregon. An important feature of the Willamette River Basin WWMs is the simulation of western water law during periods of water scarcity. Projections of where and when water shortages might occur, and the consequences of such shortages for agriculture, forests, and municipalities, are driven by alternative scenarios of future climate and policy choices. Freshwater stands ready to apply the WWM integrated modeling framework to water resource modeling in other basins.

Physical Map of River Willamette