LWI Monitoring and Modeling

In response to the need for improved science-based flood mitigation decisions, LWI invested $145 M in watershed monitoring, modeling and mapping. An objective of the program is to afford all communities access and opportunity to well-established scientific tools that can be used to inform project identification, prioritization, and implementation while creating a framework for holistic watershed management. LWI Region 5 directly benefits from the program and will receive an estimated 30 of 100 gauges and nearly $20 M in a Region 5 H & H Watershed Model. 

LWI H&H Modeling  

The state is working with engineering experts to develop hydrologic and hydraulic (H&H) models of major watersheds throughout Louisiana, in consultation with local and regional stakeholders. A fundamental outcome of the modeling investment is to create a user-centered tool to simulate the flow of rainfall runoff and predict the rise of water levels and flooding. Once complete, LWI Region 5 will have access to baseline models that can evaluate flood mitigation plans, policies and projects.

Ultimately the models will support greater regional collaboration around shared water management challenges and build an objective, science-based understanding of how projects, policies and other measures will reduce flood risk.

A priority of the LWI Region 5 Steering Committee has been to ensure that the regional models are locally accessible and used by local engineers, floodplain managers, and other flood mitigation stakeholders to make collaborative science-based decisions. Critical to the longevity of the program will be the need to provide for long-term use, storage, and maintenance (MUSM). Region 5 Steering Committee members have facilitated robust discussions around MUSM and have recommended a regional approach that values higher local participation in the models’ sustainability.  

LWI River and Rain Gauge Network 

Based on input from local and regional stakeholders, LWI designed an enhanced gauge network in areas where additional gauges are needed. This effort was accomplished in collaboration with researchers from UL Lafayette and Tulane University; technical experts from USGS and NOAA; and the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. Nearly 100 new gauges are actively being installed throughout the state. To view the status of LWI gauge installed to date, visit USGS

LWI Model Update

LWI Region 5 Modeling Update Photo

LWI Region 5 Modeling Update