Application of Watershed Analysis (Using GIS) : Applications in Management and Planning of Natural Resources (Especially for GATE-Geospatial 2022)

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A watershed is a hydrologic unit often used for the management and planning of natural resources. Therefore, an important application of watershed analysis is in watershed management. Watershed management approaches the organization and planning of human activities on a watershed by recognizing the interrelationships among land use, soil, and water as well as the linkage between uplands and downstream areas. The state of Washington in the United States, for example, has enacted the Watershed Planning Act, which addresses such issues as water resource, water quality, and salmon habitat needs. One requirement for implementing watershed management programs is the analytical capability to provide not only watershed boundaries but also hydrologic parameters useful for the management programs.

Picture Shows Online Watershed Analysis Tool

Watershed analysis is used for the management and planning of natural resource:

  • To provide necessary inputs for hydrological modeling.
  • Flood prediction modeling and snow melt runoff models etc.
  • Watershed analysis provides catchment boundaries but also hydrological parameters useful for management programs.

The Clean Water Act, introduced in the 1970s in the United States, is aimed at restoring and protecting the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the nation՚s water. Among the Act՚s current action plans is the call for a unified policy for ensuring a watershed approach to federal land and resource management. The policy՚s guiding principle is to use a consistent and scientific approach to manage federal lands and resources and to assess, protect, and restore watersheds.

Another major application of watershed analysis is to provide the necessary inputs for hydrologic modeling. For example, the Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC) of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers has a software package called Hydrologic Modeling System (HMS) , which can simulate the precipitation runoff processes using different scenarios. These Hydrologic elements can be generated from watershed analysis.

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