Water

Water Program

Since its founding, the Jones Center at Ichauway has conducted detailed studies of the ecology and hydrology of the lower Flint River basin. Periods of water scarcity became common in the region beginning in the 1970s with the expansion of center-pivot irrigation, which greatly increased human use of water in the region. In the past two decades, a warming climate has exacerbated this increase in human demand for water and placed additional stresses on aquatic ecosystems of the region.

Increased demands combined with periodic droughts will likely have unintended negative consequences for aquatic biota, ecological services, and human health. Our program addresses three fundamental issues associated with water resources in the region:

  • How temporal variation in water availability affects aquatic ecosystems of the lower Flint River basin
  • How climate change and human use of water influences water availability and water quality in the region
  • Management actions necessary to accommodate human demand for water while maintaining ecosystem services

We address these questions with detailed studies within three thematic areas:

  • Aquatic habitat, function, and ecosystem services – Understanding the impacts of altered hydrology and human water use on aquatic ecosystems of the lower Flint River basin.
  • Hydrologic Modeling of the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint river basin and upper Floridan Aquifer – Simulation modeling of landscape-scale hydrology and land cover alternatives to evaluate management scenarios.
  • Geographically Isolated Wetlands – Understanding the hydrology, function, and biological significance of isolated wetlands in the context of both natural landscapes and working lands.

Water is essential for life, yet is becoming increasingly scarce. Globally, humans are already using more than half of the available freshwater every year. Our increasing demand for water threatens the health of streams, rivers, wetlands, lakes, and the biota that live within them. We use the lower Flint River Basin as a case study for understanding and providing solutions to water scarcity.

Water is essential for life, yet is becoming increasingly scarce. Globally, humans are already using more than half of the available freshwater every year. Our increasing demand for water threatens the health of streams, rivers, wetlands, lakes, and the biota that live within them. We use the lower Flint River Basin as a case study for understanding and providing solutions to water scarcity.

The Latest in Water Research

Stat

Approximately half of the original extent

of geographically isolated wetlands in the southeastern U.S. have been lost or significantly impaired

Stat

Approximately half of the original extent

of geographically isolated wetlands in the southeastern U.S. have been lost or significantly impaired

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