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Unformatted text preview: 1) WATERSHEDS 1) WATERSHEDS 2) GROUNDWATER and STORMWATER 3) WATER QUALITY and POLLUTION Watersheds: Watersheds: Connecting Weather to the Environment 1. What is a watershed? 2. The System of Watersheds 3. Where does our water come from? 1. Weather & Watersheds:
• • • Rain Flooding and Tropical Storms Drought 1. What You Can Do A watershed is an area of land from which all runoff drains, or 'sheds' to the same river, lake, or other body of water. What is a watershed? What is a watershed? Everyone lives in a watershed Everyone lives in a watershed
You don’t need to visit the Grand Canyon to see a watershed. You’re already in one! Your own backyard is part of a watershed. The System of Watersheds The System of Watersheds
Watersheds are like pieces of a puzzle: Each is part of a larger picture or mosaic. Watersheds are also like Russian Matryoshka or nesting dolls. Larger watersheds contain smaller watersheds, which contain even smaller ones. A Nested System A Nested System Just as our homes have street addresses, our neighborhood watersheds have environmental addresses. Watershed Addresses Watershed Addresses Your Watershed Address Your Watershed Address
Insert a map of your watershed on this slide. Resources for finding your watershed: USGS Science in Your Watershed: water.usgs.gov/wsc EPA Surf Your Watershed: www.epa.gov/surf Where does our water come from? Where does our water come from?
All of our freshwater starts as precipitation, which moves continually through the hydrologic cycle. Condensation Snowmelt Evaporation Ocean Storage Streams and rivers Lakes Aquifers Groundwater flow to oceans Springs Precipitation Infiltration into the ground The SurfaceGroundwater System The SurfaceGroundwater System
Surface and underground water bodies form an inter connected system. Surface water recharges groundwater storage. Groundwater also flows up into surface water bodies.
Groundwater video: http://www.learner.org/vod/vod_ window.html?pid=332 Where does our water go? Where does our water go? Drinking Water Sources Drinking Water Sources
Most water systems (80%) in the U.S. use a ground water source for drinking water, but the majority of the population (66%) are served by surface water sources. PA Drinking Water
Identify where your city’s drinking water comes from. Visit http://www.epa.gov/safewater/dwinfo/index.html Is it surface water or groundwater? Water & Watershed Management Water & Watershed Management Issues and Challenges What are a few of the primary issues and challenges related to water? Stormwater Flow Flash Floods and Streambank Erosion Habitat Loss Water Quality and Public Health Where does our water go? Where does our water go? Flow rate time Water & Watershed Management Water & Watershed Management Issues and Challenges WATER QUALITY and PUBLIC HEALTH: What is the most common cause of pollution in streams, rivers, and oceans? Water & Watershed Management Water & Watershed Management Issues and Challenges What is the most common cause of pollution in streams, rivers, and oceans? 1. Dumping of garbage by cities 2. Surface water running off yards, streets, paved lots, and farm fields 3. Trash washed into the ocean from beaches 4. Waste dumped by factories Precipitation runoff from farms, lawns, and paved surfaces is the leading source of water pollution in America today. Sources of Pollution Sources of Pollution What’s in the water? What’s in the water?
Main pollutants: •Fertilizers •Herbicides •Insecticides •Oil, grease, and toxic chemicals from urban areas •Sediment •Road Salt •Bacteria and Nitrogen •Air pollutants Humans depend on very small reservoirs of water for all our needs. These reservoirs cycle/ turnover very quickly. As they cycle they can either collect pollution from other sources, or be cleaned by passing through functioning ecosystems. Water Pollution
Two major classifications • Point Source • Nonpoint Source Water Pollution Water Pollution Point Sources
• Single large source • Can localize it to one spot Sewage pipes
– Industrial Plants Point Source Example • LUST Leaky Underground Storage Tanks • 22% of the 1.2 million UST are LUSTy • Look at water pollution from gasoline... Point source examples Nonpoint Sources
• Diffuse source or many smaller point sources • Automobiles • Fertilizer on fields Non point source examples Nonpoint source pollutants nutrients 31 Weather & Watersheds: Flooding Weather & Watersheds: Flooding A flood occurs anytime a water body overflows or when an unusual amount of water collects in dry areas. Because urban watersheds contain so many paved surfaces… Less water goes into the ground, and… More heads for the nearest stream or low lying area. Urban Flooding Urban Flooding A flash flood is a particularly dangerous type of flood that occurs within 6 hours or even an hour after the start of rainfall. Flash Flooding Flash Flooding Flash floods are typically caused by intense thunderstorm downpours, but… Causes of Flash Floods Causes of Flash Floods …the failure of a dam or levee can also trigger flash flooding. Sometimes a hurricane’s worst punch comes after the storm has passed. Hurricane Floyd (1999) Flooding from Tropical Storms Flooding from Tropical Storms This was the case with Hurricane Floyd, which left North Carolina inundated with historic and deadly floods days after the storm. How can drought impact a watershed?
1. Reduced soil moisture (plant stress) 2. Reduced water levels in lakes, reservoirs, wetlands 3. Reduced water flow in streams, rivers, springs 4. Groundwater depletion, land subsidence 5. Water quality problems Weather & Watersheds: Drought Weather & Watersheds: Drought Drought in Your Area Drought in Your Area
Resources: U.S. Drought Monitor http://drought.unl.edu/dm/monitor.html Click on your state for a closeup view of drought stages. • Based on current water quality standards, over 70 percent of our rivers, 68 percent of our estuaries and 60 percent of our lakes now meet legislatively mandated goals. • Some of the risks include – pollutant runoff from agricultural lands – stormwater flows from cities Water Pollution – Meeting the Standards of the Clean Air Acts • About 40,000 times each year, sanitary sewers overflow and release raw sewage to streets and waterbodies.
39 Protecting Watersheds: Protecting Watersheds: What You Can Do Everyday
Simple Ways to Protect Your Watershed • Don’t Dump or Litter • Water and Landscape Wisely • Control the Flow • Pick up After Rover • Fix that Leak • Participate in a Cleanup Air Pollution 41 Air pollutant impacts
• • • • • • • Greenhouse effect Ozone depletion acidification smog formation eutrophication human health ecosystem health
42 43 44 Criteria Air Pollutants
• EPA uses six "criteria pollutants" as indicators of air quality • EPA established for each of them a maximum concentration above which adverse effects on human health may occur. 45 Criteria air pollutants
• Nitrogen Dioxide: NO2 – brownish gas irritates the respiratory system originates from combustion (N2 in air is oxidized); NOx sum of NO, NO2, other oxides of N – primary constituent of urban smog – reaction of VOC + NOx in presence of heat +sun light – reduces bloods ability to carry O2 – product of incomplete combustion
46 • Ozone: ground level O3 • Carbon monoxide: CO • Lead: Pb – cause learning disabilities in children , toxic to liver, kidney, blood forming organs – tetraethyl lead – anti knock agent in gasoline
• leaded gasoline has been phased out • Particulate Matter: PM10 (PM 2.5) • Sulfur Dioxide: SO2
– respiratory disorders – formed when fuel (coal, oil) containing S is burned and metal smelting – precursor to acid rain along with NOx
47 Additional Resources
• Air pollution
– US EPA
• http://www.epa.gov/oar/oaqps/ • http://www.epa.gov/air/ • Water pollution
– US EPA • http://www.epa.gov/water/
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- Fall '10