TR 57 - Real-Time Reservoir Operation Decision Support Under the Appropriation Doctrine, J.R. Eckhardt, May 1991

In the Western U.S., as competition for water from over appropriated rivers escalates, water rights decrees continuously increase in numbers and become more complex. The result is that the task of operating a multiple reservoir system according to the Doctrine of Prior Appropriation water rights system is becoming so formidable that the current procedures used by reservoir operators are unusable except for the obvious and straight forward water rights operations. To make matters worse, real-time data acquisition systems have further complicated the operations process by creating an information management crisis for reservoir operators. This dissertation focuses on identifying and resolving the problems of operating a reservoir system in real-time under the Prior Appropriation Doctrine of water rights. Systems engineering methods were employed to analyzed the currently used and accepted reservoir operations practices in order to develop a formalized reservoir operations procedures that could be used in real-time.