Planning & Management

Oral

394279 - Adapting Reservoir Operations to Reduce the Multi-Sectorial Impacts of Flood Intensification in the Lower Susquehanna

Tuesday, June 5
2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Greenway GH
Co-Authors: Patrick Reed, Ithaca, N.Y. – Cornell University; Julianne Quinn, Ithaca, N.Y. – Cornell University

This study characterizes how changes in reservoir operations can be used to better balance the competing objectives of protecting from growing flood intensities and meeting multi-sectoral water demands in the Lower Susquehanna River Basin (LSRB), USA. Tensions in the LSRB are increasing with urban population pressures, evolving energy demands, and growing flood-based infrastructure vulnerabilities. This study explores how re-operation of the Conowingo Reservoir, located in the LSRB, can improve the balance between competing demands for hydropower production, urban water supply to Chester, PA and Baltimore, MD, cooling water supply for the Peach Bottom Atomic Power Plant, recreation, federal environmental flow requirements and improved mitigation of growing flood hazards. The LSRB is one of the most flood prone basins in the US, impacted by hurricanes and rain-on-snow events causing an average $100 million in economic losses and infrastructure damages to downstream settlements every year. The aim of this study is to define policies capable of balancing the Conowingo reservoir’s multi-purpose objectives under a suite of socio-economic and hydro-climatic scenarios. This is an issue relevant to developed river basins globally where intensifying urban floods in reservoir systems are in direct conflict with multi-sectoral demands.

Jazmin Zatarain Salazar


Cornell University

Jazmin Zatarain Salazar, Ph.D. student, Cornell University.

I received my bachelor degree in Agro-industrial Engineering at Chapingo Autonomous University, a center for agricultural studies in Mexico. I developed an interest for water resources during my years at Chapingo when traveling to different rural communities throughout the country where water scarcity clearly affects economic development and well-being. I then received my M.S. in Environmental Sciences from the Autonomous University of San Luis Potosí, Mexico and an M.S. in Natural Resources Management from the University of Applied Sciences of Cologne, Germany. I am now pursuing a Ph.D. in Environmental and Water Resources Systems Engineering at Cornell University with Professor Patrick Reed. My main research interests include multiobjective river basin management and algorithm diagnostics for multi-purpose reservoir control.

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