Bringing People, Data, and Models Together – Addressing Impacts of Climate Change on Stream Temperature

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This study set out to answer the question: “What data and modeling frameworks are needed to provide scientists reliable, climate-informed, water temperature estimates for freshwater ecosystems that can assist watershed management decision making?” To accomplish this, the study gathered existing stream temperature data, identified data gaps, deployed stream temperature monitoring devices, and de...

This study set out to answer the question: “What data and modeling frameworks are needed to provide scientists reliable, climate-informed, water temperature estimates for freshwater ecosystems that can assist watershed management decision making?” To accomplish this, the study gathered existing stream temperature data, identified data gaps, deployed stream temperature monitoring devices, and developed and tested a stream temperature model that could be regionalized across the Northeast domain. We partnered with another funded project team, led by Jana Stewart at WI USGS to collect data from over 10,000 locations across the climate science center domain. This collection effort aided in identifying data gaps where addition stream temperature would prove useful. Through connection with State, Federal, Academic, and NGO partners, we deployed additional stream temperature data loggers throughout the domain. Using the data compiled from the collection effort a statistical stream temperature model was developed, calibrated, and validated over portions of the NE CSC region. This model is one alternative for estimating stream temperatures at locations that not actively monitored and can be useful in estimating the impacts of climate change on individual streams.