SWAT Literature Database for Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Title:Spatial analysis of a Chesapeake Bay Sub-Watershed: How land use and precipitation patterns impact water quality in the James River 
Authors:Delia, K.A., C.R. Haney, J.L. Dyer and V.G. Paul 
Volume (Issue):13(11) 
Article ID:1592 
URL (non-DOI journals): 
Broad Application Category:hydrologic and pollutant 
Primary Application Category:HAWQS application and/or component 
Secondary Application Category:pollutant cycling/loss and transport 
Watershed Description:26,791.74 km^2 James River, which drains to the Chesapeake Bay after draining much of the central part of Virginia, U.S. 
Calibration Summary: 
Validation Summary: 
General Comments: 
Abstract:Changes in land cover throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed, accompanied by variability in climate patterns, can impact runoff and water quality. A study was conducted using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) for the James River watershed in Virginia, the southernmost tributary of the Chesapeake Bay, from 1986 to 2018, in order to evaluate factors that affect water quality in the river. This research focuses on statistical analysis of land use, precipitation, and water quality indicators. Land cover changes derived from satellite imagery and geographic information system (GIS) tools were compared with water quality parameters throughout that timeframe. Marked decreases in forest land cover were observed throughout the watershed, as well as increased residential development. Our findings suggest strong links between land cover modification, such as residential development, and degraded water quality indicators such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment. In addition, we note direct improvements in water quality when forest land areas are preserved throughout the watershed. 
Keywords:watershed modeling; watershed management; water quality modeling; best management practices; land use/land cover change; climate change; integrated modeling; nonpoint pollution; ecohydrology