BPA Fish and Wildlife FY 1997 Proposal

Section 1. Administrative
Section 2. Narrative
Section 3. Budget

see CBFWA and BPA funding recommendations

Section 1. Administrative

Title of project
Libby and Hungry Horse Modeling Technical Analysis

BPA project number   8346500

Business name of agency, institution or organization requesting funding

Sponsor type   MT-State/Local Agency

Proposal contact person or principal investigator
 NameBrian Marotz
 Mailing addressMontana Fish, Wildlife & Parks
490 N. Meridian Road
Kalispell, MT 59901

BPA technical contact   Ron Morinaka, EWP 503/230-5365

Biological opinion ID   None

NWPPC Program number   10.3B.3, 10.4B.5

Short description
Funds one modeler to develop/refine IRCs, maintain model code, modify program utilities and run simulations using the Montana reservoir models LRMOD and HRMOD. This person will also construct optimization programs to link IFIM river models with existing reservoir models.

Project start year   1994    End year   2010

Start of operation and/or maintenance   

Project development phase   Implementation

Section 2. Narrative

Related projects
Project 8346700 Kootenai IFIM/Mitigation. Projects 9101901 Hungry Horse Mitigation and 9502500 Flathead IFIM. Monitoring will be performed under project 9501200 after IRCs are implemented.

Project history
Computer modeling began in 1985 as part of research on Libby and Hungry Horse reservoirs. Empirical data from 1982 to 1987 were used to construct and verify to reservoir components. Additional data from 1988 through present has been used to extend the models downstream and add utilities at the request of operating agencies (BPA, Corps and Bureau of Reclamation). Modeling was funded in part by the SOR process 1991-1995. This project was designed to fund our computer modeler and purchase minor hardware and software to continue research on Integrated Rule Curves, white sturgeon and salmon recovery and to link river and reservoir models.

Biological results achieved
Integrated Rule Curves were completed in 1994 and published in January 1996. The models provided quantitative results for Libby and Hungry Horse reservoirs that were used to assess resident fish concerns relative to ESA actions on endangered Snake River salmon. Recently, LRMOD was used to develop an experimental design for the tiered approach for flows to enhance endangered Kootenai River white sturgeon spawning and rearing.

Annual reports and technical papers
Model Development to Establish Integrated Operational Rule Curves for Hungry Horse and Libby Reservoirs, Montana. January 1996. Mitigation for Excessive Drawdowns at Hungry Horse and Libby Reservoirs. MFWP and CSKT, 1993. Appendix K SOR EIS portions pertaining to Hungry Horse and Libby. 1996. Aquatic Modeling: Hungry Horse Selective Withdrawal. 1995.

Management implications
Integrated Rule Curves balance power and flood control with resident and anadromous fish. IRCs contain an independently derived strategy for system flood control (nearly identical to the Corps VARQ strategy). The White Sturgeon Recovery Team voted unanimously to support the tiered approach to sturgeon flows (embodied n the IRC concept). The IRCs are cheaper than the NMFS Biological Opinion and provide balance between resident and anadromous fish requirements.

Specific measureable objectives
To link river IFIM-based models to reservoir models.

Implement IRCs to balance reservoir and river operations on system-wide basis to provide a framework to compare incremental tradeoffs to resident and anadromous fish caused by various system operating strategies (beyond the SOR process).

To create regional equity in system operations to benefit all fish from a system-wide perspective.

Testable hypothesis
See 1996 report on models.

Underlying assumptions or critical constraints
IRCs are best implemented with the use of a new system flood control strategy (Corp's VARQ strategy). The Corps will report on VARQ in Nov. 1996. VARQ provides a better balance between resident and anadromous fish. IRCs must be implemented to provide benefits to fish in the Columbia Drainage and affected reservoirs.

The models are empirically calibrated component models that run using Fortran and Basic. Models can run on a PC with appropriate memory. The modeling strategy is site-specific but the concept is portable to other reservoirs given the necessary physical and biological data. (2) Statistics are typically non-linear regression, multi-variate analyses and empirical relationships. The statistics and model components have been critically reviewed twice by the Fishery Research Institute and Applied Physics Laboratory, Seattle. (3) None. targeted fish species include westslope cutthroat at Hungry Horse and kokanee salmon and white sturgeon at Libby. Effects of hydro operations on trophic levels can be used to qualitatively assess non-targeted resident fish species (including bull trout, whitefish, rainbow and various non-game species).

Brief schedule of activities
During 1996, modeling focused on white sturgeon and system analyses assessing resident and anadromous species (the models can be used with other system models HYDROSIM and HYSSR.

IRCs were updated to mimic the Army Corps' VARQ system flood control strategy. The "Al Wright" process showed that IRCs provide spring discharges similar to the NMFS 95 BiOp; were less expensive (27 million annually) and differed mainly in August.

Biological need
Computer modeling has been the focus of many system-wide evaluations (SOR process, technical analysis team, NPPC cost evaluations, Al Wright Process, Technical Management Team, White Sturgeon Recovery Team, etc.).

Critical uncertainties
Models are constructed to mimic reality using empirical data. Once IRCs are implemented, biological results must be evaluated empirically.

Summary of expected outcome
The models will provide results to operating agencies. Future links between river and reservoir models will further refine assessments of tradeoffs between reservoir and riverine fish requirements.

Dependencies/opportunities for cooperation
Modeling efforts have demonstrated cooperative opportunities between NPPC, BPA, BOR, Army Corps, USFWS, State and Tribes and NMFS.

Implementing model products (IRCs) will influence power, flood control and target flows for anadromous species recovery.

Monitoring activity
Monitoring is contained is a separate project 9501200.

Section 3. Budget

Data shown are the total of expense and capital obligations by fiscal year. Obligations for any given year may not equal actual expenditures or accruals within the year, due to carryover, pre-funding, capitalization and difference between operating year and BPA fiscal year.

Historic costsFY 1996 budget data*Current and future funding needs
1983: 132,532
1984: 318,265
1985: 258,174
1986: 416,714
1987: 0
1988: 562,331
1990: 223,140
1991: 230,187
1992: 289,963
1993: 27,501
1994: 28,801
Obligation: 0
Authorized: 30,000
Planned: 30,000
1997: 33,460
1998: 35,000
1999: 37,000
2000: 40,000
2001: 40,000

* For most projects, Authorized is the amount recommended by CBFWA and the Council. Planned is amount currently allocated. Contracted is the amount obligated to date of printout.

Funding recommendations

CBFWA funding review group   Resident Fish

Recommendation    Tier 1 - fund

Recommended funding level   $33,460

BPA 1997 authorized budget (approved start-of-year budget)   $33,460