Stochastic empirical loading and dilution model for analysis of flows, concentrations, and loads of highway runoff constituents

Transportation Research Record
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Abstract

In cooperation with FHWA, the U.S. Geological Survey developed the stochastic empirical loading and dilution model (SELDM) to supersede the 1990 FHWA runoff quality model. The SELDM tool is designed to transform disparate and complex scientific data into meaningful information about the adverse risks of runoff on receiving waters, the potential need for mitigation measures, and the potential effectiveness of such measures for reducing such risks. The SELDM tool is easy to use because much of the information and data needed to run it are embedded in the model and obtained by defining the site location and five simple basin properties. Information and data from thousands of sites across the country were compiled to facilitate the use of the SELDM tool. A case study illustrates how to use the SELDM tool for conducting the types of sensitivity analyses needed to properly assess water quality risks. For example, the use of deterministic values to model upstream stormflows instead of representative variations in prestorm flow and runoff may substantially overestimate the proportion of highway runoff in downstream flows. Also, the risks for total phosphorus excursions are substantially affected by the selected criteria and the modeling methods used. For example, if a single deterministic concentration is used rather than a stochastic population of values to model upstream concentrations, then the percentage of water quality excursions in the downstream receiving waters may depend entirely on the selected upstream concentration.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Stochastic empirical loading and dilution model for analysis of flows, concentrations, and loads of highway runoff constituents
Series title Transportation Research Record
DOI 10.3141/2436-14
Volume 2436
Year Published 2014
Language English
Publisher Transportation Research Board of the National Academies
Contributing office(s) New England Water Science Center
Description 9 p.
First page 139
Last page 147
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N