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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A GIS application for regional streamflow analysis Cathcart, Jaime G.


Regional analysis is a statistical procedure used by hydrologists to estimate streamflow parameters for ungauged streams. The procedure involves analyzing historical flow records for streams in a particular region, in order to estimate flows for other streams in the region. Traditionally, the process of obtaining and summarizing relevant streamflow data has been rather inefficient and time-consuming. Regional streamflow analysis is performed frequently in British Columbia, and there is a need for a system designed to facilitate this process. This thesis involves the development of such a system. The system is comprised of a computer program (DATSUM) which statistically analyzes and then summarizes streamflow data for British Columbia, in a format which can be read and displayed by a geographic information system(GIS). Water Survey of Canada (WSC) streamflow records are the raw database, and the GIS used for this project is a locally developed product, known as QUIKMap. The system operates on DOS based personal computers, and information is presented to the user as a series of symbols on a digitized map of the major rivers and streams of B.C. Each symbol represents a WSC streamflow station, and detailed information about each station can be simply obtained by selecting the stations of choice with an electronic computer mouse. This information can then be used for regional analyses or other streamflow dependent applications. The thesis also involves adapting a flow estimating program, called FLOOD, to make it compatible with the DATSUM program. The FLOOD program estimates extreme high or low flows for streams with little or no streamflow data, and is perfectly suited to be used in conjunction with the DATSUM / GIS system. Finally, use of the DATSUM / GIS system is illustrated with a regional analysis of the Kitseguecla River. The results are then used as input for the FLOOD program, and the river's 200 year flood is estimated.

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