Delaware • New Jersey • Pennsylvania
New York • United States of America
For Immediate Release
January 15, 2009
(WEST TRENTON, N.J.) -- Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) Executive Director Carol R. Collier today announced that the flood analysis model being developed by an interagency team led by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) will not be delivered to the DRBC this month as originally planned.
"We now expect the flood analysis model will be available around April 30," Collier said. "While the DRBC is disappointed in the delay, we are eager to utilize the information that the model will provide. We understand from the USGS that the delay is necessary to ensure that a product of the highest quality is developed."
The USGS is the primary contractor working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Hydrologic Engineering Center (USACE - HEC) and the National Weather Service (NWS) to develop the model for DRBC.
According to the USGS, additional time is needed to calibrate the rainfall-runoff component of the model with more-detailed radar precipitation data, which are expected to provide more accurate results.
This tool will help the DRBC (a five-member agency comprised of Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York State, and the federal government) and the 1954 U.S. Supreme Court decree parties (the four basin states and New York City) to evaluate the potential impacts that different initial storage levels at 15 major reservoirs would have had on flooding at forecast points located downstream for the three storm events experienced in September 2004, April 2005, and June 2006.
"The knowledge and information to be learned from this computer model will be used by the DRBC and the decree parties, in conjunction with other existing models, as we consider the competing demands on basin water storage with the uncertainty of the future," Collier added. "The model's completion will not mark the end of this process, but instead allow for more informed policy decisions as we move forward."
Work on the flood analysis model began in August 2007 with $500,000 provided by the four basin state governors. Additional funds and in-kind services from USGS, NWS, and the USACE have totaled $285,000.
The DRBC was formed by compact in 1961 through legislation signed into law by President John F. Kennedy and the governors of the four basin states with land draining to the Delaware River. The passage of this compact marked the first time in our nation’s history that the federal government and a group of states joined together as equal partners in a river basin planning, development, and regulatory agency.
Additional information can be found on the commission's web site at www.drbc.net.
Contact: Clarke Rupert, DRBC, 609-883-9500 ext. 260, firstname.lastname@example.org