2023 RiverWare User Group Meeting Tuesday, August 29, 8am–5pm
  Wednesday, August 30, 8am–Noon
A Prototype Forecast-Informed Reservoir Operation (FIRO) for Lake Conroe, TX — Application of Riverware in Reservoir Operational Modeling
John Zhu and Nelun Fernando—Texas Water Development Board

Forecast-informed reservoir operations (FIRO) is a reservoir-operations strategy that uses weather and hydrological forecasts to inform decision making to selectively retain or release water from reservoirs to optimize water supply reliability and to enhance flood-risk reduction. Lake Conroe is selected as the prototype modeling because it is a water supply reservoir that must consider flood control operations, post Hurricane Harvey. Hydrologic Engineering Center-Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC-HMS) is employed to simulate inflows to the Lake. Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF) for 7 days are retrieved and input to HEC-HMS automatically. NOAA's Precipitation Outlooks for 8-14 days, 3-4 weeks and for next season are read and input to the Riverware model for Lake Conroe to determine the target reservoir operational level, which is governed by rule that considers the outlooks based on their lead-times. Pre-release or lowering down pool elevation is determined by forecasted total inflow of the third day from current day. The release rate and lowering level depend on amount of forecasted total inflow. The release time is before the third day's peak time of the inflow. This pre-release operation is the highest priority (No.1 rule). Initial modeling result demonstrated that Riverware is well-suited and useful for FIRO modeling for Lake Conroe. Future planned efforts include upgrading this model to be an operational model for the San Jacinto River Authority, and applying this prototype modeling framework to the FIRO pilot project underway in the Little River watershed of the Brazos River Basin in Texas.

Click HERE for a PDF version of the presentation slides.
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