Evaluation of Data Needs to Support Water Quality Models for Setting Nutrient Targets

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Many prior attempts to use water quality models to set nutrient targets (criteria and/or allowable loads) have been rejected for regulatory application, due to excessive uncertainty caused by insufficient data to support the model. This presentation will discuss the amount of data required to develop a mechanistic water quality model that can support water quality management actions for nutrients. Topics to be covered include:

  • The relationship between the amount of data available to support model application and resulting model error.
  • The applicability of different model uncertainty analysis techniques for use with mechanistic nutrient models.
  • Summary of interviews with State regulatory staff regarding data requirements, model uncertainty and other factors.


  • David W. Dilks, Ph.D., LimnoTech
  • Steve Chapra, Ph.D., Tufts University
  • Todd Redder, LimnoTech
  • Lola Olabode (co-moderator), The Water Research Foundation
  • Penelope Moskus (co-moderator), LimnoTech

This is a joint webcast with the Water Research Foundation.

There will be 2.0 Professional Development Hours (PDHs) offered for this webcast. Please check with your state accreditation agency to determine if you qualify.