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Idaho State Section of the American Water Resources Association

Community, Conversation, Connection

2013-2014 Executive Board:

President: Ellen Berggren, US Army Corps of Engineers
Past-President: Derek Risso, Ecosystem Sciences
President-Elect: Steven R. Hannula, MWH Global
Vice-President and Program Committee Chair: Ryan Carnie, GeoEngineers, Inc.
Secretary/Treasurer: Kathy Peter, Community Volunteer
BSU Student Chapter President: vacant
Membership Chair: vacant

Idaho State Section Members

Thank you to our supporters:

  • Avista Corporation
  • CH2M Hill
  • Ecosystem Sciences
  • GeoEngineers, Inc.
  • HDR Engineering
  • MWH Americas
  • West Water LLC
  • Click here to join ID AWRA or to renew your membership.

  • Annual individual Section membership fee: $20
  • Annual student Section membership fee: $ 5
  • Annual corporate/institution groups Section membership fee (Memberships for up to 5 members of group are included. Groups are named on ID-AWRA webpages and programs and have the opportunity to display information at meetings) : $100
  • Additional corporate/institutional group member: $ 15
  • For more information on AWRA:

    IDAWRA is a partner in BREN, the Boise River Enhancement Network

    Brownbag Presentation: "Computer models used to conjunctively administer water rights on the East Snake Plain Aquifer ESPA"

  • Dr. Allan Wylie,   Idaho Department of Water Resources
  • Wednesday, October 29, 11:30 -1 pm (talk will start at 11:45)
  • Location:              Washington Group Plaza Executive Dining Room (Turn left at the front desk and right at the cafeteria),  720 Park Blvd,  Boise, ID  83712
  • Water levels, spring discharges, and gains in the Snake River have been declining in the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer (ESPA). Due to declining flows in Rangen spring a farmer made a call on the groundwater pumpers on the ESPA. The Idaho Department of Water Resources claimed that the interaction between ground water and surface water was too complex to administer. In 1993 the State Supreme Court ruled that the Department must administer ground water and surface water conjunctively using the best available science. Since 1999 the Idaho Department of Water Resources has used computer models to conjunctively administer ground water and surface water rights on the ESPA. The available data to calibrate a ground water model and the scientific tools to assist in calibration have all changed since 1999. Therefore over time, three different models have been used, all have been based on the data available and the scientific tools available when they were calibrated.
  • Brownbag Presentation: "Swan Falls Agreement and its Aftermath 30 years later" 

  • Lynn Tominaga, Idaho Water Policy Group
  • Wedenesday, November 19, 11:30 -1 pm (talk will start at 11:45)
  • Location:              Washington Group Plaza Executive Dining Room (Turn left at the front desk and right at the cafeteria),  720 Park Blvd,  Boise, ID  83712
  • The Swan Falls Agreement was signed in 1984 and was reaffirmed by the Idaho State Legislature in 2009.  But with this reaffirmation is the realization that the minimum flows set at Swan Falls of 3900 cfs (April thru October) and 5600 cfs (November thru March) are now approaching those flows. The minimum stream flow right held by the State at the Murphy Gage (located approximately 4 miles downstream of the Swan Falls facility) was for 3,300 cfs at the time of the negotiations, while Idaho Power Company’s hydropower rights were for 8,400 cfs at the Swan Falls facility.  It was thought at the time, the lowest flows ever had been 4500 cfs during the summer months so a minimum was set at 3900 cfs to allow for some future development for the next 20 years or about 100,000 acres of land and enough water for industrial and municipal uses for the next 50 years.   Last year, the flows at Swan Falls came within 100 cfs of violating the minimum stream flows.  The question of what will the state policy become if those flows are violated. To read a brief history of the Swan Falls Agreement, click here.
  • Training Opportunity: NORFMA rescheduled the Basic HEC-RAS Short Courses for December 3 to 5 in Boise, Idaho.

    Click here for more information and for questions, please contact Henry Hu at (425) 646-8806 or (from Henry Hu, PhD., P.E., P.H., D.WRE; NORFMA Training Committee Chair)

    Brownbag Presentation:"Managed Aquifer recharge in the East Snake Plain Aquifer (ESPA)"

  •  Neal Farmer, Idaho Department of Water Resources
  • Wednesday, January 28, 2015 11:30 -1 pm (talk will start at 11:45)
  • Location:              Washington Group Plaza Executive Dining Room (Turn left at the front desk and right at the cafeteria),      720 Park Blvd, Boise, ID  83712
  • Aquifer recharge in the East Snake Plain Aquifer (ESPA) has gained momentum in recent years with more funding, more modeling and more sites to deliver water too.  For purposes of recharge, the ESPA is split into essentially the upper basin and the lower basin with the boundary located at the American Falls Reservoir Dam.  The main reason for the boundary is based from the Water Board’s policy that recharge will not compete with upper basin reservoir fill.  This effectively eliminates recharge above American Falls Dam during the late fall, winter and spring unless there is an abundant supply of spring runoff water that exceeds the reservoir system capacity to retain it.  Statistical analysis shows that roughly 50% of the time recharge cannot be done above American Falls Reservoir due to low water supplies.  Recharge below American Falls is different because it does not compete with upper basin reservoir fill.  Therefore, recharge (especially below Minidoka Dam) can occur in the late fall, winter and spring because of natural flow in the Snake River of approximately 500 cfs spilling at Milner Dam during this time period.  This water is then available below American Falls Dam and the Water Boards recharge water right is in priority during this time period.  The real problem is conveying this water to locations that are geologically and geographically acceptable to receive high flow rates of water without causing impacts.  Currently, a two pronged approach is being implemented to implement recharge; one by direct injection of waters into the subsurface via injection wells and the other to route water through existing conveyance structures (canals) to land surface spreading/leakage basins.  Both of these options have their own unique set of issues at each individual location.  Getting water into the ground in meaningful volumes and flow rates isn’t as easy as you might think it is! 

  • Who is the AWRA?

      The AWRA is dedicated to the advancement of water resources management, research, and education. Members represent a community of water professionals with diverse backgrounds, but they share engagement in solving some of the toughest water resources challenges.

      Activities include evening networking dinners with presentations on water-resources topics, field trips, and networking luncheons. Membership in national AWRA is not required to join ID AWRA.

    IDAWRA provides a common forum in which professionals in water resources can exchange ideas pertaining to all aspects of water resources research and management by:

    • promoting research and technological, social, economic, and legislative advances;
    • collecting and disseminating information, knowledge, and data;
    • relating the needs of management, educational institutions, and governmental agencies for specialized services and guidance to qualified professionals and consultants;
    • opening up and maintaining lines of communication between members of this Section and the public;
    • promoting the rational and objective protection, development, utilization, and management of water resources;
    • cooperating with others concerned with water resources; and
    • promoting the multidisciplinary objectives of the AWRA.

    Idaho State Section By-Laws

    Recent events:

    Dinner Meeting: Responding to  Climate Change – What we Know and What we are Doing?
    Tuesday, October 14, 2014
    Panel Members:
    Wayne S. Wright (Moderator), GeoEngineers, Inc.
    Neely Miller, Idaho Department of Water Resources
    Rob Sampson, Natural Resource Conservation Service
    Daniel J. Isaak, US Forest Service
    Toni E. Turner, Bureau of Reclamation  

    IDAWRA Movie Night at The Flicks "Return of the River"
    September 18, 2014
    Speaker: Robert Hamilton, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation Engineer

    IDAWRA Brownbag: Unmanned aerial systems application to environmental assessments
    Thursday, May 1 , 2014
    Speakers: Matt Hayes and David James, Hayes & James, LLC

    IDAWRA Annual Dinner Meeting:Reducing Post-Fire Watershed Flood Risk - Paths to Community Success
    Thursday, April 17,2014
    Panel Members:
    T.J. Clifford, BLM, Burned Area Emergency Response Team Lead for Elk-Pony Wildfire Complexes
    Angenie McCleary, Blaine County Commissioner
    Ellen Berggren, US Army Corps of Engineers, Idaho Silver Jackets Coordinator
    Michael Lewis, USGS, Director of Idaho Water Science Center
    Mark Stephensen, Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security, State Hazard Mitigation Officer

    IDAWRA Brownbag: Big Wood River Post-Fire Flood Damage Risk Impact Assessment from the 2013 Beaver Creek Fire near Hailey
    Wednesday, April 9, 2014
    Speaker: Darrell Eidson, P.E., D.WRE, Hydraulic Engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Walla Walla

    IDAWRA Brownbag:Nutrient Trends in Streams and Rivers of the United States
    Wednesday, March 26, 2014
    Speaker: Lori A. Sprague, Research Hydrologist, U.S. Geological Survey

    IDAWRA Brownbag:Debris-Flow Hazard Assessment of the Area Burned by the 2013 Beaver Creek Fire near Hailey
    Wednesday, March 5, 2014
    Speaker: Kenneth Skinner, Hydrologist, U.S. Geological Survey

    Past ID AWRA Events

    ID AWRA 2009-2010 Annual Report

    ID AWRA 2010-2011 Annual Report

    ID AWRA 2011-2012 Annual Report

    ID AWRA 2012-2013 Annual Report

    ID AWRA 2013-2014 Annual Report

    Maintained by Kathy Peter. Last changed on October 16, 2014