Statistical Assessments of River Flow Alterations and Environmental Flow Standards Academic Article uri icon


  • A water availability modeling (WAM) system consisting of the Water Rights Analysis Package (WRAP) and input datasets for all Texas river basins has been used for statewide, regional, and operational planning and water allocation regulatory purposes for many years. The modeling system was recently expanded to support integration of environmental flow requirements in comprehensive water management. A strategy is presented in this paper for combining the WRAP-WAM modeling system with data management and statistical analysis tools to expand capabilities for analyzing stream flow alterations and the effects on flows of environmental flow standards. A Trinity River Basin case study demonstrates the utility of the modeling and analysis strategy in addressing relevant issues in the river systems of Texas and elsewhere. Dams and reservoirs constructed on the Trinity River and tributaries supply water for the DallasFort Worth and Houston metropolitan areas, which are among the most rapidly growing large metro areas in the United States. Ecologically relevant statistical analyses of observed flows presented in this paper are designed to quantify flow alterations. Analyses of simulated flows representing natural and specified conditions of development are performed to assess the impacts of both water resources development and the establishment of environmental flow standards.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Wurbs, R. A., & Yang, M.

complete list of authors

  • Wurbs, Ralph A||Yang, Ming-Yue

publication date

  • 2022