Date of Graduation
Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering
Committee Member/Second Reader
Since 1901, heavy rainfall events have increased in the United States in both intensity and frequency, and population in the United States has increased, resulting in significant land use changes. Both of these trends could explain an increase in observed flood magnitude and frequency. In order to determine if a relationship exists between land use/land cover and changing stream flows in northwest Arkansas, this study analyzed temporal changes in various flow statistics for fourteen stream gages and compared the rates of change in flow statistics from gages on streams with watersheds that have varying land uses, i.e. urban, agricultural, and undeveloped. Mann-Kendall analysis was used to determine statistically significant changes in flow statistics, which were then compared to National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD) watershed land uses from 2001 and 2019. All analyzed gages had at least one flow statistic with at least a moderately significant increase, and all analyzed flow statistics increased at least moderately significantly at atleast two gages. There were no decreases of any significance in any flow statistic at any gage. In general, the development of urban land did not happen on native land, but land that was previously used for agriculture. Significant positive relationships were found between maximum yearly flow and 2019 urban land use, 2001-2019 urban land use, and 2019 Human Development Index (HDI). A similar relationship was found to exist between yearly minimum flow and 2019 HDI.
Flood, Hydrology, Land Use, Urbanization, Streamflow Statistics
McMullen, T. (2022). The Effect of Changing Land Use on Streamflow Statistics and Flood Flows Across Select Gages in Northwest Arkansas. Civil Engineering Undergraduate Honors Theses Retrieved from https://scholarworks.uark.edu/cveguht/77