Project Description: Water is essential for maintaining an adequate food supply and a productive environment for the human population and for other animals, plants, and microbes worldwide. Many countries seriously lack the water resource, for example, nine of the fourteen Middle Eastern countries. To keep the resources of water, different ways including purely technical (increase the use of surface water, improvement of distribution systems and irrigation scheduling, recycling, use of water saving irrigation systems, use of reclaimed, and brackish waters, etc.) and socio-economic (pricing, rationalization) have been applied for effective water resource mangement. Although the rainfall in some countries is plentiful, it is not evenly distributed. Most of the precipitation is concentrated in the raining season. An unevenly distributed water resource is caused by a combination of concentrated rainfall, short rivers and rapid flows, poor flow conditions, uneven time distribution of flows, and rapid rise of flow peak. Thus, more efficient water resource management and allocation strategies are required.
Development of sustainable water resource management: The Kaoping River Basin is the largest and the most intensively used river basin in Taiwan. Due to the uneven rainfall and flow distribution, the basin is suffering a shortage of water supply problem. Sustainable water resource management strategies have been developed to effectively utilize the limited water resource in the basin. The applied strategies include the following: construction of water collection gallery system, installation of riverbank infiltration system, installation of groundwater recharge and extraction system, wastewater reclamation and reuse, and replacement of old water supply pipes. These measures are more sustainable and more environmental acceptable compared with other traditional construction measures (e.g., reservoir, long-distance water transportation conduit).
Water quality modeling system for river pollution index evaluation: Suspended solid (SS) and ammonia nitrogen (NH3-N) are two major non-point source (NPS) pollutants causing the deterioration of water quality. A water quality modeling system has been developed to obtain SS, NH3-N, and river pollution index (RPI) values for water quality evaluation. A direct linkage between the RPI calculation and a water quality model [Water Quality Analysis Simulation Program (WASP)] has been developed. Investigation results show that the SS concentrations were highly correlated with the flow rates. The obtained SS equation and RPI calculation package were embedded into the WASP model to improve interactive transfers of required data for water quality modeling and RPI calculation. Results demonstrate that the integral approach could develop a direct linkage among river flow rate, water quality, and pollution index. The introduction of the integrated system showed a significant advance in water quality evaluation and river management strategy development.
Integrated two-model system for river water quality evaluation: In this study, an integrated two-model system composed of a multimedia watershed model and a river water quality model was developed to effectively simulate the impacts of non-point source (NPS) pollution on river water quality. NPS pollution loadings were calculated using the Integrated Watershed Management Model (IWMM). Results from the IWMM modeling were used as the input data for the river water quality evaluation using the Water Quality Analysis Simulation Program (WASP) modeling. The land use patterns classified using SPOT images and Digital Elevation Model techniques with the aid of Erdas Imagine® process and ArcView® geographical information system were applied to assist the NPS pollution simulation. Simulated results indicate that the IWMM model was able to capture the principal hydrological characteristics and accurately assess the NPS pollution. Results demonstrate that the integral approach could develop a direct linkage between upstream land use changes and downstream water quality. The introduction of the integrated two-model system shows a significant advance in estimating the water quality. The IWMM assisted WASP modeling will be useful in developing appropriate watershed management strategies for the improvement of river water quality.
Integrated GIS and multimedia modeling on NPS Pollution Evaluation: Non-point source (NPS) pollution is one of the major causes of the impairment of surface waters. Assessing the potential of NPS pollution to assist in the planning of best management practice (BMP) is significant for improving pollution prevention and control. In this study, land use identification in the studied basin was performed by properly integrating the skills of geographic information system (GIS) and global positioning system (GPS). An integrated watershed management model (IWMM) was applied for simulating the water quality and evaluating NPS pollutant loads to the studied basin. The model was calibrated and verified with collected water quality and soil data, and was used to investigate potential NPS pollution management plans. Simulated results indicate that NPS pollution has significant contributions to the nutrient loads to the river during the wet season. Results also reveal that NPS pollution plays an important role in the deterioration of downstream water quality and caused significant increase in nutrient loads into the basin’s water bodies. Simulated results show that source control, land use management, and grassy buffer strip are applicable and feasible BMPs for NPS nutrient loads reduction. GIS system is an important method for land use identification and waste load estimation in the basin. Linking the information of land utilization with the NPS pollution simulation model may further provide essential information of potential NPS pollution for all sub-regions in the river basin.
Pollutant source investigation, carrying capacity determination, and watershed management strategy development: In many developing countries, the municipal wastewater, agircultural wastewater and industrail wastewater are usually discharged into the local rivers without proper treatment, which causes the deterioriation of river water quality. Concern about the deteriorating condition of the river led the local government authorities to amend the relevance legislations and strengthen the enforcement of the discharge regulations. To effectively manage the watershed and control the pollution, the pollution source investigation, water quality modeling, and carrying capacity calculation need to be conducted to develop appropriate watershed mnagement strategies. The strategies usually consist of short-term management and improvement measures [e.g., intercepting sewer systems, construction of natural treatment systems (wetland and overland flow systems)] and long-term structural measures (e.g., sewer system construction).
Conclusion: The concentrated rainfall, short rivers and rapid flows, poor flow conditions, uneven time distribution of flows, and rapid rise of flow peak in many watersheds cause the unevenly distributed water resource in these regions. This causes the lowest utilization of the water resource. Due to the increased water demand of domestic and industrial usage in these basins, comprehensive and sustainable water resource allocation and development strategies need to be developed. Depending on the watershed conditions, the strategy consists of short-term and long-term management and structural measures. Usually these measures include rainwater catchment, stormwater detention and management, water collection gallery system, riverbank infiltration system, groundwater recharge and extraction system, wastewater reclamation and reuse, desalination system, replacement of water supply pipes. Other sustainable water resource protection strategies include the following: (1) Prevent water pollution through emphasis on public information programs, education, and law enforcement. (2) Implement strict management of upstream water catchment areas and protection of forests to maintain the quality and quantity of water. (3) Enhance land-use management, forest preservation, soil and water conservation, pollution prevention and treatment, to protect the sources and quality of water in catchment areas. (4) Conduct comprehensive surveys and monitoring of underground water resources and promulgate regulations for underground water management, setting effective economic instruments to support enforcement of the regulations. (5) Extend coverage of sewerage systems. (6) Establish water resources policies that place equal emphasis on reducing consumption and developing sources of water supply, and strengthen water management and the reuse of wastewater. The experience and findings obtained from our studies would be helpful in develoing water resource managment strategies for other watersheds
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