Iowa Watershed Approach Hydrologic Network

Sponsor/grant agency:

Logo of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban DevelopmentU.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) National Disaster Resilience Competition

Team:

Larry Weber, Witold Krajewski, Dan Ceynar, James Niemeier, Ray Hammond, Radek Goska, and Ibrahim Demir

$200,000

Amount of leveraged funding

Oct 2016–Sept 2021

Project Period

Iowa

Location

Partners:

Iowa Economic Development Authority, Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management, University of Iowa, Iowa State University, University of Northern Iowa, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, cities of Dubuque, Coralville, and Storm Lake; Benton, Buena Vista, Fremont, Iowa, Johnson, Mills, Winneshiek, and Howard counties

Services provided by IFC:

Using new and improved technologies, the Iowa Flood Center has deployed a hydrologic network to measure real-time conditions in each of the eight rural watersheds involved in the Iowa Watershed Approach.

“The university [of Iowa] has been really good to us here,” Iowa County farmer Stewart Maas says. “I’ve got a lot of respect for the hydrology department.” —Stewart Maas and son Jared make use of data produced by an IFC hydrologic station on their property

Project Description:

Through the Iowa Watershed Approach, the Iowa Flood Center (IFC) has deployed a network of 20 hydrologic network stations to help researchers understand hydrologic conditions in the watershed, allowing them to better analyze and forecast flood and drought conditions. The hydrologic stations measure rainfall and wind speed and direction, as well as soil moisture and temperature conditions. They are co-located with a shallow groundwater well. Data from the stations is collected in real-time and made available on the Iowa Flood Information System (IFIS) (ifis.iowafloodcenter.org/ifis/).

The 20 new stations are an expansion of the IFC’s existing statewide network of about 40 rain gauge stations. The new gauges will help the IFC reach its goal to deploy one station in every county in Iowa. The proposed dense network of about 100 hydrologic stations would help better predict floods, assess droughts, manage water resources, and benefit Iowa’s agricultural producers.

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