Predicting the effects of land cover and stormwater management on stream health in Baltimore County, Maryland
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Type of Workapplication/pdf
ix, 135 pages
DepartmentTowson University. Department of Geography and Environmental Planning
RightsCopyright protected, all rights reserved.
There are no restrictions on access to this document. An internet release form signed by the author to display this document online is on file with Towson University Special Collections and Archives.
Maintaining stream health in urban and agricultural riverscapes is a challenge for environmental managers, and requires a better understanding of stream ecology and biogeography. This study develops a spatial generalized least squares model for predicting the effects of land cover and stormwater management (SWM) on Piedmont stream health in Baltimore County, Maryland. Such models are needed to better integrate stream health management with local land use planning and SWM programs. The model predicts stream health impairment with >80% accuracy. Model performance is suitable for supporting a precautionary policy for preventing water quality impairment. Results show how SWM reshapes catchments, and interacts with stream health through coupled human-environment systems. Riparian buffers had little impact on stream health, while large effects were found for impervious surfaces and forest cover. Continuing development of SWM data resources and refinements to the model promise new knowledge and more nuanced and precise predictions.