Literature-Reviewed Estimates of Riparian Consumptive Water Use in the Drylands of Northeast Arizona, USA

Open-File Report 2020-1129
Prepared in cooperation with Fred Phillips Consulting



This report provides the best estimates of riparian area evapotranspiration (ET) on the rivers and streams of the Navajo Nation by (1) quantifying the natural riparian vegetation water use within the Little Colorado River watershed using a literature search for comparable riparian ET estimates, and (2) in conjunction with the given area of stream-side plant cover on the Navajo Nation, provides the best estimate of consumptive use, the total water requirement (in acre-feet). This report includes riparian water use information only from the literature for riparian areas that are in similar dryland ecosystems in the Southwest, and not specific to the perennial tributaries and springs on the Navajo Nation within the Little Colorado River watershed. The report also includes any information found regarding the location of Navajo Nation weather station variables, such as where we can derive required data inputs from the Navajo Nation to estimate actual ET rates (in millimeters per day or millimeters per year). We provide estimates of annual riparian plant water use and calculations that include reference ET (potential ET or ETo), precipitation (in millimeters), and the calculations of consumptive water requirements of riparian vegetation. We cite our data sources and provide references used to determine the consumptive water requirement (acre-feet).

Suggested Citation

Nagler, P.L., 2020, Literature reviewed estimates of riparian consumptive water use in the drylands of Northeast Arizona, USA: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2020–1129, 9 p.,

ISSN: 2331-1258 (online)

Study Area

Table of Contents

  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Literature Review
  • Conclusion
  • References Cited

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Literature reviewed estimates of riparian consumptive water use in the drylands of Northeast Arizona, USA
Series title Open-File Report
Series number 2020-1129
DOI 10.3133/ofr20201129
Year Published 2020
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Southwest Biological Science Center
Description v, 9 p.
Country United States
State Arizona
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details