Optimizing Flexibility and Value in California’s Water System - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Optimizing Flexibility and Value in California’s Water System
1 / 54

  • Uploaded on
  • Presentation posted in: General

Optimizing Flexibility and Value in California’s Water System. Jay R. Lund Richard E. Howitt Marion W. Jenkins Stacy K. Tanaka Civil and Environmental Engineering Agricultural and Resource Economics University of California, Davis. http://cee.engr.ucdavis.edu/faculty/lund/CALVIN/.

I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.

Download Presentation

Optimizing Flexibility and Value in California’s Water System

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Presentation Transcript

Optimizing flexibility and value in california s water system

Optimizing Flexibility and Value in California’s Water System

Jay R. Lund

Richard E. Howitt

Marion W. Jenkins

Stacy K. Tanaka

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Agricultural and Resource Economics

University of California, Davis


Real work done by

Dr. Andrew J. Draper Dr. Kenneth W. Kirby

Matthew D. Davis Kristen B. Ward

Brad D. Newlin Stacy Tanaka

Brian J. Van Lienden Randy Ritzema

Siwa M. Msangi Guilherme Marques

Pia M. Grimes Dr. Arnaud Reynaud

Jennifer L. CorduaMark Leu

Matthew EllisTingju Zhu

Inês Ferreira Sarah Null

Real work done by

Funded by

CALFED Bay Delta Program

State of California Resources Agency

National Science Foundation

US Environmental Protection Agency

California Energy Commission

US Bureau of Reclamation

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Funded by

Thanks for many things

We had a lot of help.

Advisory Committee of ten, Chaired by Anthony Saracino

Diverse staff of DWR, USBR, MWDSC, SKS Inc., USACE HEC, EBMUD, CCWD, USACE, SDCWA, SCWA, SWC, and others.

Varied providers of ideas, data, and support.

Thanks for many things


Part I – Assembling the Water Puzzle


What is the CALVIN model?

Approach and Data

Part II - CALVIN Results

Policy Alternatives


Conclusions, Implications and Future


Motivation for project

Motivation for Project

  • California’s water system is huge and complex

  • Supplies, demands, return flows, and reuse

  • Surface water and groundwater

  • Controversial and economically important

  • Major changes are being considered

Motivation for project1

Motivation for Project

  • Can we better understand this system?

  • How could system management be improved?

  • How much would changes benefit users?

  • How much would users be willing to pay for:

    • more water

    • changes in facilities & policies?

      These are not “back of the envelope” calculations.



  • Economic “scarcity” is a useful indicator of good water management performance.

  • Integrated management of water resources, facilities, and demands can improve performance, esp. at regional scales.

  • The entire range of hydrologic events is important, not just “average” and “drought” years.

  • Optimization, databases, and newer methods, data, and software support more transparent and efficient management.

What is scarcity

What is Scarcity?

What is calvin

What is CALVIN?

  • Economic-engineering optimization model

    • Economic Values for Agricultural & Urban Uses

    • Flow Constraints for Environmental Uses

  • Prescribes monthly system operation over the historical hydrology

  • Entire inter-tied California water system

What is optimization

What is Optimization?

Finding the “best” decisions within constraints.

  • “Best” based on estimated performance.

  • Decision options are limited by physical and policy constraints.

  • Software searches available decisions for the “best” ones.

    Optimization can identify promising solutions.

Calvin optimization in words

CALVIN Optimization – In Words

Decisions: Water operations and allocations

Find “best” performance:

Maximize net benefits over historic hydrology

(Minimize economic losses & costs)

Limited by:

(1) Water balance

(2) Flow and storage capacities

(3) Minimum flows



a) Develop schematic of sources, facilities, & demands.

b) Develop economic values for agricultural & urban water use for 2020 land use and population.

c) Identify minimum environmental flows.

d) Reconcile estimates of 1922-1993 historical inflows.

e) Develop documentation and databases for more transparent and flexible statewide analysis.

f) Combine this information in an optimization model.

Approach continued

Approach (continued)

g) Three policy alternatives:

1) Base Case

– current operation and allocation policies

2) Five Regional Optimizations/Water Markets

– current import and export levels

– economically driven decisions

3) Statewide Optimization/Water Market

h) Interpret results.

Model schematic north

Model Schematic - North

Model schematic south

Model Schematic - South

Calvin s demand coverage

CALVIN’s Demand Coverage



Upper Sacramento Valley

Lower Sacramento Valley & Delta

San Joaquin and Bay Area

Tulare Basin

Southern California

Economic values for water

Economic Values for Water

  • Agricultural: Production model SWAP

  • Urban: Based on price elasticities of demand

  • Operating Costs

  • Environmental: Use constraints instead of economic values

Swap model regions

SWAP Model Regions

Agricultural crop descriptions

Agricultural Crop Descriptions

Optimizing flexibility and value in california s water system

Tomato Production-Yolo County



Efficiency cost trade offs orchards sacramento valley

Efficiency-Cost Trade-offs: Orchards Sacramento Valley

Agricultural water use values








Benefits ($ 000)





























Deliveries (taf)

Agricultural Water Use Values

Urban water use values









Penalty ($000)
















Deliveries (taf)

Urban Water Use Values

Operating costs

Operating Costs

  • Fixed head pumping

    • Energy costs

    • Maintenance costs

  • Groundwater recharge basins

  • Wastewater reuse treatment

  • Fixed head hydropower

  • Urban water quality costs

Environmental constraints

Environmental Constraints

  • Minimum instream flows

    • Rivers (e.g., Trinity, Sacramento, American, Feather, San Joaquin, San Joaquin tributaries)

    • Lakes (Mono Lake, Owens Lake)

    • Delta outflows

  • Wildlife refuge deliveries in Central Valley

Hydrology surface groundwater

Hydrology Surface & Groundwater

  • 1921 - 1993 historical inflows

    • Monthly flows

    • Represents the wide range of water availability over 72 years.

Optimizing flexibility and value in california s water system

Data Flow for the CALVIN Model

Database and interface

Tsunami of data for a controversial system

Political need for transparent analysis

Practical need for efficient data management

Databases central for modeling & management

Metadata and documentation

Database & study management software

Systematic data management is needed for transparency and informed decision-making.

Database and Interface

Calvin s innovations

CALVIN’s Innovations

  • 1) Statewide model

  • 2) Groundwater and Surface Water

  • 3) Supply and Demand integration

  • 4) Optimization model

  • 5) Economic perspective and values

  • 6) Data - model management

  • 7) Supply & demand data checking

  • 8) Integrated management options

Optimizing flexibility and value in california s water system

Part II

CALVIN Results &

Policy Conclusions

Policy alternatives

Policy Alternatives

  • 1) Base Case

    • Current operating and allocation policies

  • 2) Regional Optimization Case (5 regions)

    • Current inter-regional flows

    • Flexible operations within each region

    • 5 Regional water markets

  • 3) Statewide Optimization Case

    • Statewide water market

Some results

Some Results

  • Water Scarcity & Economic Performance

  • Willingness to pay and Import Values

  • Costs of Environmental Flows

  • Economic Value of Facility Changes

  • Conjunctive Use

Total costs by region

Total Costs by Region

Scarcity by region

Scarcity by Region

Agricultural scarcity cost changes by region swm

Agricultural Scarcity Cost Changes by Region - SWM

Urban scarcity cost changes swm

Urban Scarcity Cost Changes - SWM

Willingness to pay


Value of additional imports to southern california

Value of Additional Imports to Southern California

Colorado R.



Marginal cost of trinity river flows

Marginal Cost of Trinity River Flows

Environmental flow costs

Environmental Flow Costs

Economic value of facility changes

Economic Value of Facility Changes

Statewide groundwater storage

Statewide Groundwater Storage

Conjunctive use

Conjunctive Use

Policy conclusions

Policy Conclusions

Markets transfers exchanges

Markets, Transfers, & Exchanges

a) Regional & statewide markets can reduce water scarcity and scarcity costs. Most benefits occur with regional markets.

b) Flexibility of markets allow environmental flows to be more easily accommodated.

c) Markets never reduced deliveries to any major user more than 15%.

d) Exchanges and transfers improve operational efficiency and increase overall deliveries.

e) If ~20% of water is allocated by markets, most scarcity disappears statewide.

Infrastructure capacity

Infrastructure Capacity

a) Additional infrastructure is very valuable economically at some locations and times.

b) Select inter-ties, recharge, and other conveyance expansions show the greatest benefits – by far.

c) Surface storage expansion has much less value, assuming conjunctive use is available.

d) Water reuse can have significant water supply value.

Conjunctive use1

Conjunctive Use

a) Statewide: surface storage ~40 MAF

groundwater storage 140+ MAF

CALVIN uses ~73 MAF

Base Case uses ~58 MAF

b) Regional and statewide optimization employs more conjunctive use.

c) Conjunctive use of ground and surface waters has large economic and operational benefits for every region.

d) Most benefits are within regions, but substantial statewide benefits also exist.

Water demands

Water Demands

a) Water use efficiency measures are useful, but do not have unlimited potential.

b) Most water demands can be satisfied. Most unsatisfied demands could be well compensated with markets.

c) Satisfying all demands is not always economically worthwhile. Some scarcity is optimal.

Environmental flows

Environmental Flows

a) Consumptive environmental flows impose greater costs to agricultural and urban water users than instream flows.

b) With flexible operations and markets, most environmental flows impose little cost on other water users.

c) A statewide water market greatly reduces environmental costs to other water users.

Regional vs statewide management

Regional vs. Statewide Management

a) The vast majority of potential economic improvement in California’s water system is from local and regional changes.

b) Local and regional improvements greatly reduce demands for additional imported water, often by 70-90%.

c) Statewide management has some additional benefits, especially for mitigating economic impacts of environmental requirements.

Optimizing flexibility and value in california s water system

Uses for CALVIN

  • Integrated long-term regional and statewide planning

  • Integrated supply & demand data management

  • Preliminary economic evaluation

  • Planning & operations studies:

  • Facility expansion, Joint operations, Conjunctive use, Catastrophe response, Climate change, Water transfers, ...

Optimizing flexibility and value in california s water system

Future of CALVIN

  • Continuing University development (climate change, flood control, hydropower, …).

  • Discussions with DWR, USBR, and LLNL regarding adoption, improvement, and use of the model and related ideas.

Optimizing flexibility and value in california s water system

Concluding Thought

  • Purposes of Computer Models:

  • - Make better sense of complex systems

  • - Suggest promising infrastructure & operations

  • - Develop ideas for better management


  • Login