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Simulation of water quality for Salt Creek in northeastern Illinois

Open-File Report 96-318

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Abstract

Water-quality processes in the Salt Creek watershed in northeastern Illinois were simulated with a computer model. Selected waste-load scenarios for 7-day, 10-year low-flow conditions were simulated in the stream system. The model development involved the calibration of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency QUAL2E model to water-quality constituent concentration data collected by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) for a diel survey on August 29-30, 1995, and the verification of this model with water-quality constituent concentration data collected by the IEPA for a diel survey on June 27-28, 1995. In-stream measurements of sediment oxygen demand rates and carbonaceous biochemical oxygen demand (CBOD) decay rates by the IEPA and traveltime and reaeration-rate coefficients by the U.S. Geological Survey facilitated the development of a model for simulation of water quality in the Salt Creek watershed. In general, the verification of the calibrated model increased confidence in the utility of the model for water-quality planning in the Salt Creek watershed. However, the model was adjusted to better simulate constituent concentrations measured during the June 27-28, 1995, diel survey. Two versions of the QUAL2E model were utilized to simulate dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations in the Salt Creek watershed for selected effluent discharge and concentration scenarios for water-quality planning: (1) the QUAL2E model calibrated to the August 29-30, 1995, diel survey, and (2) the QUAL2E model adjusted to the June 27-28, 1995, diel survey. The results of these simulations indicated that the QUAL2E model adjusted to the June 27-28, 1995, diel survey simulates reliable information for water-quality planning. The results of these simulations also indicated that to maintain DO concentrations greater than 5 milligrams per liter (mg/L) throughout most of Salt Creek for 7-day, 10-year low-flow conditions, the sewage-treatment plants (STP's) must discharge effluent with CBOD and total ammonia as nitrogen concentrations substantially below the permit limits. If the STP's discharge effluent with CBOD and total ammonia as nitrogen concentrations at the permit limits for 7-day, 10-year low-flow conditions, DO concentrations less than 5 mg/L are expected for all of Salt Creek downstream from Fullerton Avenue (river mile 23.1).

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Simulation of water quality for Salt Creek in northeastern Illinois
Series title:
Open-File Report
Series number:
96-318
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1996
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey ; Information Services [distributor],
Description:
viii, 136 p. :ill. ;28 cm.