Resource shed defnitions and computations
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Resource shed defnitions and computations
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  • Description:
    When we consider a location with a material (e.g., water, pollutant, sediment) passing through it, we can ask: Where did the material come from and how long did it take to reach the location? We can quantify the answer by defining the areas contributing to this location during various time periods as resource sheds. Various kinds of resource sheds and their source material distributions are rigorously defined and properties derived. For watershed hydrology, we compute resource sheds and their source material distributions with a spatially distributed hydrology model by tracing material departing from a cell (say 1 km2) over one time interval and arriving at the watershed mouth in another time interval. This requires modeling all cells, but only tracing contributions from one at a time. By then combining these simulations for all cell loadings, we construct a map of the contributions over the entire watershed for specific departure and arrival time intervals. We then combine results of several sets of simulations to determine the source distribution for any time period and infer resource sheds from these mappings. For lake circulation, we discuss the construction of resource sheds and their source distributions in the lake, by using lake circulation models to drive particle tracers in reverse time, and subsequent correction. We present examples for the Maumee River watershed in northern Ohio, discuss methods of computation reduction, discuss linkage with a lake circulation model to construct joint resource sheds in Lake Erie, and suggest areas of extension for the future.
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