Modeling climate, vegetation, and water balance at landscape to regional scales Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/zp38wg08b

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  • The general objective of this study was to develop models and datasets that would significantly advance our ability to assess the current and future effects of global change on the biosphere. The focus was in two areas: (1) preparing environmental datasets at regional to small watershed scales; and (2) developing models to simulate the interactions of climate, hydrology and vegetation distribution at the small watershed/landscape scale. The PRISM modeling system, a method for mapping monthly precipitation over complex terrain, was presented and evaluated. PRISM (Precipitation-elevation Regressions on Independent Slopes Model) brings a unique combination of climatological and statistical concepts to the mapping of orographic (terrain-induced) precipitation, and is very useful in preparing gridded precipitation datasets. Using PRISM and other tools, gridded climate, vegetation, and soils datasets were developed for the Reynolds Creek Experimental Watershed, a small basin in the Owyhee Mountains of southwestern Idaho. The datasets were prepared at a 200-m pixel resolution, and consisted of monthly total precipitation, and mean monthly temperature, vapor pressure, and wind speed for the calendar years 1984, 1985, and 1986. The general methods used in developing these datasets are applicable to other mountainous watersheds in which elevation is the primary determinant of the spatial variability in climatic parameters. The Reynolds Creek datasets were then used in the development of a spatially explicit, hydrology/vegetation distribution model for use in small- to medium-size watersheds. The model was a hybrid of the MAPSS (Mapped Atmosphere Plant-Soil-System) biogeographical model and the Wigmosta hydrology-vegetation model. The intent was to assess the potential for reconfiguring MAPSS, originally developed at a continental scale, to simulate the three-dimensional processes that dominate vegetation and hydrologic patterns at the watershed/landscape scale. The hybrid model, termed MAPSS-W (MAPSS-Watershed), performed well in simulating daily fluctuations in snowpack, basin discharge, and leaf area of non-woody vegetation.
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