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Measurement of flows for two irrigation districts in the lower Colorado River basin, Texas

Water-Resources Investigations Report 96-4225

Prepared in cooperation with the Bureau of Reclamation, Lower Colorado River Authority, and Texas Water Development Board
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Abstract

The Lower Colorado River Authority sells and distributes water for irrigation of rice farms in two irrigation districts, the Lakeside district and the Gulf Coast district, in the lower Colorado River Basin of Texas. In 1993, the Lower Colorado River Authority implemented a water-measurement program to account for the water delivered to rice farms and to promote water conservation. During the rice-irrigation season (summer and fall) of 1995, the U.S. Geological Survey measured flows at 30 sites in the Lakeside district and 24 sites in the Gulf Coast district coincident with Lower Colorado River Authority measuring sites. In each district, the Survey made essentially simultaneous flow measurements with different types of meters twice a day once in the morning and once in the afternoon at each site on selected days for comparison with Lower Colorado River Authority measurements. One-hundred pairs of corresponding (same site, same date) Lower Colorado River Authority and U.S. Geological Survey measurements from the Lakeside district and 104 measurement pairs from the Gulf Coast district are compared statistically and graphically. For comparison, the measurement pairs are grouped by irrigation district and further subdivided by the time difference between corresponding measurements less than or equal to 1 hour or more than 1 hour. Wilcoxon signed-rank tests (to indicate whether two groups of paired observations are statistically different) on Lakeside district measurement pairs with 1 hour or less between measurements indicate that the Lower Colorado River Authority and U.S. Geological Survey measurements are not statistically different. The median absolute percent difference between the flow measurements is 5.9 percent; and 33 percent of the flow measurements differ by more than 10 percent. Similar statistical tests on Gulf Coast district measurement pairs with 1 hour or less between measurements indicate that the Lower Colorado River Authority and U.S. Geological Survey measurements are not statistically different. The median absolute percent difference between the flow measurements is 2.6 percent; and 30 percent of the flow measurements differ by more than 10 percent. The differences noted above between Lower Colorado River Authority and U.S. Geological Survey measurements with 1 hour or less between measurements and the differences between essentially simultaneous U.S. Geological Survey measurements are of similar orders of magnitude and, in some cases, very close.

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Measurement of flows for two irrigation districts in the lower Colorado River basin, Texas
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
96-4225
Year Published:
1996
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Austin, TX
Contributing office(s):
Texas Water Science Center
Description:
iv, 38 p.
Country:
United States
State:
Texas
Online Only (Y/N):
N
Additional Online Files (Y/N):
N