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CASCaDE: Computational Assessments of Scenarios of Change for the Delta Ecosystem

This project uses process-based computational models of hydrodynamic and ecological functioning in the Delta to anticipate Delta ecosystem response to changes in climate, water supply, and land use.

A San Francisco Bay Delta-wide elevation dataset was created from a patchwork of LiDAR (light detection and ranging) data from multiple sources, photogrammetry data, and IfSAR (interferometric synthetic aperture radar) data where no better data were available. This dataset contains elevation data from five sources.

Developed models are designed to address questions such as: How will climate change, together with new conveyance structures or increased flooded island habitat, alter water flow and drinking water quality? With projected changes in residence time, turbidity, temperature, and salinity, how will primary productivity, invasive bivalves, marsh processes, contaminant dynamics, and fish populations respond?

The data are in the process of being made publicly available for use in other efforts at The CASCaDE website. Data and modeling methods are described in the publication Potential inundation due to rising sea levels in the San Francisco Bay Region. Another important publication related to this modeling effort is Projected Evolution of California's San Francisco Bay-Delta-River System in a Century of Climate Change.

U.S. Geological Survey
U.S. Geological Survey
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