2.2 -- "Official" Watershed Mapping for California
alternative source -- California Dept. of Forestry
The CALWATER system of watershed
delineation and identification is a standard used by several state agencies
and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (within California).
CALWATER provides a consistent means of labeling watersheds at different
Spatial Information Library (CaSIL)
This site is the California
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) web portal. The California Mapping
Coordinating Committee (CMCC) is in the process of developing a series
of GIS-related web pages to provide information on State government
GIS activities, access to statewide GIS data, and links to the larger
California GIS community. This website and the Spatial Information Library
are works in progress.
Environmental Information Catalog
The California Environmental
Information Catalog is an online directory for reporting and discovery
of information resources for California. Participants include cities,
counties, utilities, state and federal agencies, private businesses
and academic institutions that have spatial and other types of data
resources. The Catalog has been developed through a collaborative effort
with the California Geographic
Information Association, California
Environmental Resources Evaluation System, and the Federal
Geographic Data Committee. Thousands of public and private agencies
in California collect, use, and maintain geographic information in electronic
format. In many cases efforts are duplicated, resulting in greater costs,
inconsistent information, and longer information collection timeframes.
The lack of knowledge about existing and planned geographic information
resources is an underlying cause contributing to this unnecessary waste
of public and private money. The California Environmental Information
Catalog provides information about geographic information resources
in an effort to improve their efficient use through information sharing.
Multi-Source Vegetation & Habitat Assessment (CDF-FRAP, 2002)
Land cover data provide
the basis for FRAP analyses of wildlife habitat, water, grazing, and
development impacts. No single mapping effort provides GIS data adequate
to address this broad range of issues. Efforts to map land cover statewide
typically provide insufficient resolution to capture types that occur
as "inclusions", such as wet meadows, riparian areas, or certain
types of development. Other efforts tend to focus on mapping land cover
for a specific geographic area (e.g. bioregion, national park), or theme
(e.g. wetlands, farmland). Since resources were targeted to a narrow
focus, many of these efforts can make a reasonable claim to be the "best"
for their respective area or theme. In order to provide the most solid
basis for our analyses, FRAP staff made the decision to take advantage
of these sources and merge them into a single GIS data layer. Merging
data from multiple sources required addressing differences in scale,
resolution, and consistency. In addition, each data source had to be
cross-walked into a common classification system (California Wildlife
Habitat Relationships, CWHR).
Center for the Environment (ICE, UC Davis)
The Information Center for
the Environment (ICE) is an environmental information brokerage and
research laboratory in the Department of Environmental Science &
Policy at the University of California, Davis. ICE specializes in the
development and dissemination of geospatial data and technologies; the
development of robust data architectures dedicated to the cataloging
of global environmental information; and the creation of decision support
systems geared toward improving the capabilities of resource managers
in a variety of sectors.
The Watershed Atlas is a
catalog of geo-spatial displays and analyses of information and data
important for watershed protection and restoration. You can use the
catalog by geography, theme, key word, source/organization, and age
of source data (under construction). Or search it using your words.
This mapping site provides
national scale information on mapping and data sources. It is a fairly
low resolution source of information and is appropriate for an introduction
to mapping. It does include a land-use
tool-kit that may be useful.
Watershed Mapping (CDF-FRAP)
The Coastal Watershed Mapping
Tool allows anyone to locate a watershed of interest by zooming into
a statewide map and using watershed boundaries and scanned U.S. Geological
Survey quad maps. These maps illustrate key hydrographic components
such as streams and watershed boundaries as well as major roads, urbanized
areas, and coarse vegetation condition. After an individual watershed
is chosen, the linked screens provide information on average rainfall,
public and private land ownership, and land use and vegetation cover.
The statewide coverages for most of these layers are also available
on the FRAP web site. The advantage of the mapping tool is that it allows
anyone with access to the internet to retrieve detailed information
on factors that play a major role in determining potential non-point
source pollution sources, key wildlife habitats, and the impacts of
proposed new land uses and resource management practices.
& Watersheds Mapping Tool (CDF-FRAP)
The ESU Internet Map Server
and the Salmon and Watershed Query Tool are designed to allow anyone
with a modem and a web browser to easily identify if a specific area
is within a threatened or impaired watershed for the purpose of the
new Forest Practice Rules. Both tools will return the same information:
Watershed identifier, Watershed name, and ESU status. Users needing
quick access to this information and those on slower internet connections
should use the Salmon and Watersheds Query Tool. This database query
tool allows three ways to lookup watershed information: by CalWater
ID, by public land survey (township & range) or by searching for
watershed names in a particular county. The interface is simple to use
and watershed information is returned quickly.
GIS Applications for Census Data in Watershed Analysis (Noonan and Vreeland,
This technical note describes
the use of sociodemographic data in watershed studies by outlining a
basic method for processing and using U.S. Census 1990 Tiger/Line data.
A recommendation of data sources and methods of data use are discussed
to promote demographic analysis within special study watersheds. One
aspect of this technical note is to improve accuracy of watershed census
data through use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) capabilities.
of Landscape Features -- BLM
BLM’s National Science
and Technology Center provides some tools and information for analyzing
surface topography from digital elevation models. These tools allow
consistent estimation of terrain characteristics such as average slope
and aspect, slope lengths, ruggedness, etc. Such characteristics can
be useful in erosion estimations and watershed condition analysis.
Land Cover Characterization Program (USGS)
The Land Cover Characterization
Program (LCCP) was started in 1995 to address National and International
requirements for land cover data that were becoming increasingly sophisticated
and diverse. The goal of the land cover program is to be a national
and international center for excellence in land cover characterization.
To accomplish that goal, the program:
1) Develops state-of-the-art
multiscale land cover characteristics data bases used by scientists,
resource managers, planners, and educators. (Global Land Cover &
National Land Cover)
2) Contributes to the understanding of the patterns, characteristics,
and dynamics of land cover across the Nation and the Earth.(Urban
Dynamics & Land Cover Trends)
3) Pursues research that improves the utility and efficiency of large-area
land cover characterization and land cover characteristics databases.
4) Serves as a central facility for access to, or information about,
land cover data.(Land Cover Applications Center).
and Data Coverages
GEODE (Geo-Data Explorer)
is a free service provided by the USGS that provides digital geographically
referenced data to policymakers, land and resource managers, educators,
industries, and private citizens. GEODE provides a gateway to real-time
data and analysis over the Internet without the need for special hardware,
software, or training. Users can retrieve, display, and manipulate multiple
types of information, such as satellite images, geologic maps, graphics,
live camera feed, three-dimensional images, and spreadsheet data.
Geospatial Watershed Assessment
AGWA (USDA & US-EPA,
2003) uses widely available standardized spatial datasets that can be
obtained via the internet. The data are used to develop input parameter
files for two watershed runoff and erosion models: KINEROS and SWAT.
The Kinematic Runoff and Erosion Model (KINEROS) is an event oriented,
physically-based model developed at the USDA-ARS to describe the processes
of interception, infiltration, surface runoff and erosion from small
(less than about 100 km2) watersheds. The Soil and Water Assessment
Tool (SWAT)is a quasi-distributed model developed at the USDA-ARS to
predict the impact of land management practices on water, sediment and
agricultural chemical yields in large (basin scale) complex watersheds
with varying soils, land use and management conditions over long periods
of time (> 1 year).
Bay Program Watershed Profiles
The site provides an online
mapping tool to visualize various geographic properties of the Chesapeake
Bay watershed and sub-watersheds. The tabs along the top of the mapping
page allow one to obtain detailed information about water quality and
other information for sub-watersheds.