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DUSTING OFF THE ARCHIVES: WHAT ARCHIVES CAN TELL US ABOUT CHANGES IN WATER STORAGE AND STREAMFLOW DUE TO URBAN DEVELOPMENT

Cook, Sarah (2019) DUSTING OFF THE ARCHIVES: WHAT ARCHIVES CAN TELL US ABOUT CHANGES IN WATER STORAGE AND STREAMFLOW DUE TO URBAN DEVELOPMENT. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Land-surface alteration that accompanies urbanization influences hydrologic changes within watersheds. The urbanization of a watershed can profoundly impact groundwater and surface water interaction presented as decrease in watershed storage, variability in discharge, fluctuations in low flow magnitude, increased low flow duration, and more. Although urbanization’s effects on watershed hydrology have been explored in recent decades through land-use modeling, hydrological modeling, remote sensing, and empirical approaches, clarification of urbanization’s effects remains a challenge due to limited availability and accessibility of high temporal resolution data. Historical streamflow records for Abers Creek in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, provide a unique opportunity to study the effects of urbanization on watershed functions, such as storage and discharge. The discharge record (1948-1993) spans the complete residential development of the watershed as reconstructed from property records, this providing the timing and intensity of watershed development. Recession analysis was used to evaluate altered hydrologic response, particularly relationships between watershed storage and streamflow that may occur during urbanization. Sub-daily USGS stage data from archival records were converted to hourly or bihourly streamflow in Abers Creek to permit various hydrograph recession analyses on this unique streamflow record. Results relate build out to changes in hydrograph patterns identified through recession methods. Analysis of daily and sub-daily streamflow records suggest groundwater-surface water interactions driven by urbanization, previously only observed through modeled data or smaller datasets. Refined connections between development history and changes in hydrology allow improved mitigation of stream impacts in urban areas.


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Details

Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Cook, Sarahsbc40@pitt.edusbc40
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairThomas, Brianbfthomas@pitt.edubfthomas
Committee MemberBain, Danieldbain@pitt.edudbain
Committee MemberElliott, Emilyeelliott@pitt.edueelliott
Date: 26 September 2019
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 7 June 2019
Approval Date: 26 September 2019
Submission Date: 9 August 2019
Access Restriction: 2 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 2 years.
Number of Pages: 54
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Geology and Environmental Science
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Earth Science Hydrology Urban Recession Analysis
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2019 14:49
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2019 14:49
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/37017

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