TitleFrom qualitative to quantitative environmental scenarios: Translating storylines into biophysical modeling inputs at the watershed scale
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsBooth, EG, Qiu, J, Carpenter, SR, Schatz, J, Chen, X, Kucharik, CJ, II, SPLoheide, Motew, MM, Seifert, JM, Turner, MG
JournalEnvironmental Modelling & Software
Pagination80 - 97
ISBN Number1364-8152
KeywordsBiophysical modeling, Climate change, Land use change, scenarios, Social-ecological systems, Watershed

Scenarios are increasingly used for envisioning future social-ecological changes and consequences for human well-being. One approach integrates qualitative storylines and biophysical models to explore potential futures quantitatively and maximize public engagement. However, this integration process is challenging and sometimes oversimplified. Using the Yahara Watershed (Wisconsin, USA) as a case study, we present a transparent and reproducible roadmap to develop spatiotemporally explicit biophysical inputs [climate, land use/cover (LULC), and nutrients] that are consistent with scenario narratives and can be linked to a process-based biophysical modeling suite to simulate long-term dynamics of a watershed and a range of ecosystem services. Our transferrable approach produces daily weather inputs by combining climate model projections and a stochastic weather generator, annual narrative-based watershed-scale LULC distributed spatially using transition rules, and annual manure and fertilizer (nitrogen and phosphorus) inputs based on current farm and livestock data that are consistent with each scenario narrative.

Short TitleEnvironmental Modelling & Software