Evaluation of the EPA BASINS model for use in Georgia
Vallotton, Bobbie Ann
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A review of national and local environmental laws is used to outline the major water resource management objectives in Georgia. A survey of Georgia water resources professionals is reported to identify issues and concerns. Essentials of the legislative review and interviews were drawn upon to define interrogatory criteria for evaluation of BASINS, the EPA environmental analysis system that couples spatial analysis with hydrologic modeling. Spatial data quality, model data requirements and availability, ease of importing data, and model accuracy over different scales were examined. Model use is limited due to data scarcity, precarious parameterization, and absence of predictive analysis. Recommendations for improvements include addition of a watershed model better suited to the resources of state and local personnel with predictive uncertainty capabilities, of spatial data with recent land-use and biological information, comprehensive long-term watershed monitoring, and demonstration projects in sustainable development, agriculture, and forestry.