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An analysis of potential water availability from the Atwood, Leesville, and Tappan Lakes in the Muskingum River Watershed, Ohio

June 17, 2013

This report presents the results of a study to assess potential water availability from the Atwood, Leesville, and Tappan Lakes, located within the Muskingum River Watershed, Ohio. The assessment was based on the criterion that water withdrawals should not appreciably affect maintenance of recreation-season pool levels in current use. To facilitate and simplify the assessment, it was assumed that historical lake operations were successful in maintaining seasonal pool levels, and that any discharges from lakes constituted either water that was discharged to prevent exceeding seasonal pool levels or discharges intended to meet minimum in-stream flow targets downstream from the lakes. It further was assumed that the volume of water discharged in excess of the minimum in-stream flow target is available for use without negatively impacting seasonal pool levels or downstream water uses and that all or part of it is subject to withdrawal. Historical daily outflow data for the lakes were used to determine the quantity of water that potentially could be withdrawn and the resulting quantity of water that would flow downstream (referred to as “flow-by”) on a daily basis as a function of all combinations of three hypothetical target minimum flow-by amounts (1, 2, and 3 times current minimum in-stream flow targets) and three pumping capacities (1, 2, and 3 million gallons per day). Using both U.S. Geological Survey streamgage data and lake-outflow data provided by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers resulted in analytical periods ranging from 51 calendar years for the Atwood Lake to 73 calendar years for the Leesville and Tappan Lakes. The observed outflow time series and the computed time series of daily flow-by amounts and potential withdrawals were analyzed to compute and report order statistics (95th, 75th, 50th, 25th, 10th, and 5th percentiles) and means for the analytical period, in aggregate, and broken down by calendar month. In addition, surplus-water mass curve data were tabulated for each of the lakes. Monthly order statistics of computed withdrawals indicated that, for the three pumping capacities considered, increasing the target minimum flow-by amount tended to reduce the amount of water that can be withdrawn. The reduction was greatest in the lower percentiles of withdrawal; however, increasing the flow-by amount had no impact on potential withdrawals during high flow. In addition, for a given target minimum flow-by amount, increasing the pumping rate increased the total amount of water that could be withdrawn; however, that increase was less than a direct multiple of the increase in pumping rate for most flow statistics. Potential monthly withdrawals were observed to be more variable and more limited in some calendar months than others. Monthly order statistics and means of computed daily mean flow-by amounts indicated that flow-by amounts generally tended to be lowest during June–October and February. Increasing the target minimum flow-by amount for a given pumping rate resulted in some small increases in the magnitudes of the mean and 50th percentile and lower order statistics of computed mean flow-by, but had no effect on the magnitudes of the higher percentile statistics. Increasing the pumping rate for a given target minimum flow-by amount resulted in decreases in magnitudes of higher-percentile flow-by statistics by an amount equal to the flow equivalent of the increase in pumping rate; however, some lower percentile statistics remained unchanged.

Publication Year 2013
Title An analysis of potential water availability from the Atwood, Leesville, and Tappan Lakes in the Muskingum River Watershed, Ohio
DOI 10.3133/sir20135112
Authors G. F. Koltun
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Scientific Investigations Report
Series Number 2013-5112
Index ID sir20135112
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Ohio Water Science Center