Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences

Livneh Research Group

Livneh Research Group


Welcome! Our research group focuses on physical hydrology research from small catchment scales all the way up to continental river basins. Our mission is understanding how climate change and land cover disturbance fundamentally affect water resources. Major analytical tools include development and application of sophisticated land surface models that merge in situ observations and remote sensing within a physically consistent framework.

          

Current Projects

Sediment Modeling in the Colorado Front Range

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Extreme Streamflow Events in the Upper Missouri River Basin

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Fundamental Physics of Great Plains Drought

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Available Data Sets

Daily Obserational Hydrometeorology data set: North American Extent

A data set of observed daily and monthly averaged precipitation, maximum and minimum temperature, gridded to a 1/16° (~6km) resolution that spans the entire country of Mexico, the conterminous U.S. (CONUS), and regions of Canada south of 53º N for the period 1950-2013. The dataset improves previous products in spatial extent, orographic precipitation adjustment over Mexico and parts of Canada, and reduction of transboundary discontinuities. The precipitation is adjusted for orographic effects using an elevation-aware 1981-2010 precipitation climatology. Because of the consistent gridding methodology, the current product reduces transboundary discontinuities making it suitable for estimating large-scale hydrometeorologic phenomena. Also included are daily wind data from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction - National Centers for Atmospheric Research (NCEP - NCAR) resampled to the same grid as temperature and precipitation.

Hydrometeorological states and fluxes are simulated over the full period 1950-2013 using the Variabile Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model v.4.1.2.c.

The gridded meteorology is hosted here by the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) http server.

The gridded hydrologic model output is hosted here by the NCEI http server.

The complete data set including gridded meteorology and VIC simulated hydrometeorology hosted here at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory FTP server. 

If you use these data, please cite: Livneh B., T.J. Bohn, D.S. Pierce, F. Munoz-Ariola, B. Nijssen, R. Vose, D. Cayan, and L.D. Brekke, 2015: A spatially comprehensive, hydrometeorological data set for Mexico, the U.S., and southern Canada 1950-2013, Nature Scientific Data, 5:150042, doi:10.1038/sdata.2015.42.

 


 

Daily Obserational Hydrometeorology data set: CONUS extent with Canadian extent of the Columbia River Basin

Similar methodology to above, a data set of observed daily and monthly averaged precipitation, maximum and minimum temperature, gridded to a 1/16° (~6km) resolution spanning CONUS and the Canadian portion of the Columbia River Basin, with temporal coverage 1915-2011. The precipitation is adjusted for orographic effects using an elevation-aware*1961-1990 precipitation climatology. 

The complete data set including gridded meteorology and VIC simulated hydrometeorology is hosted on the Livneh Research Group server, as well as at the University of Washington server. An interactive subsetting tool for the meteorological variables only is available at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Physical Sciences Division data page.

If you use these data, please cite:

Livneh B., E.A. Rosenberg, C. Lin, B. Nijssen, V. Mishra, K.M. Andreadis, E.P. Maurer, and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2013: A Long-Term Hydrologically Based Dataset of Land Surface Fluxes and States for the Conterminous United States: Update and Extensions, Journal of Climate, 26, 9384–9392.

 


 

Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model parameters at 1/16°

The model parameters used to simulate the hydrologic fluxes and states in the two data above sets are available here on the Livneh Research Group server.

These parameters represent the culmination of numerous calibration efforts including those conducted by Maurer et al. (2002)Zhu et al. (2007) at 1/8° and Tang et al. (2012) at 1/16°, as well as default parameters from the NLDAS initiative for other regions. Information on the VIC model is available here on the University of Washington page.

*Note: Since soil-parameter calibrations were done on a basin-by-basin basis, certain parameters are discontinuous across basin boundaries. 

If you use these parameters, please cite:

Livneh B., E.A. Rosenberg, C. Lin, B. Nijssen, V. Mishra, K.M. Andreadis, E.P. Maurer, and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2013: A Long-Term Hydrologically Based Dataset of Land Surface Fluxes and States for the Conterminous United States: Update and Extensions, Journal of Climate, 26, 9384–9392.

Maurer E. P., A.W. Wood, J.C. Adam, D.P. Lettenmaier, and B. Nijssen, 2002: A Long-Term Hydrologically Based Dataset of Land Surface Fluxes and States for the Conterminous United States*. Journal of Climate, 15, 3237–3251.

You may also consider citing:

Zhu, C., T. Cavazos, and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2007: Role of antecedent land surface conditions in warm season precipitation over northwestern Mexico.Journal of climate, 20(9), 1774-1791.

Tang, Q., E.R. Vivoni, F. Muñoz-Arriola, and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2012: Predictability of evapotranspiration patterns using remotely sensed vegetation dynamics during the North American monsoon. Journal of Hydrometeorology,13(1), 103-121.

 

Publication on the Reservoir Evaporation Workshop--access the publication here

New Research Published on the Ongoing California Drought--access the manuscript here.

Presentations at the American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting

January 14th, 2016: Below are a list of presentations and sessions contributed by the group.

Livneh, B., K. Friedrich, R. Grossman, J. Huntington, and P. Blanken, American Meteorological Societ Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, Jan.2016: Estimating reservoir evaporation: Evaluating current and future practices and research-to-operations pathways.

Kim J, Cifelli R., Johnson L.E., Livneh, B., and V. Chandrasekar, American Meteorological Societ Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, Jan. 2016:Comparison of Semi-Distributed and Fully Distributed Hydrological Models in Complex Terrain.

Interview with KGNU: Morning Magazine

January 1st, 2016: Prof. Ben Livneh interviewed on the science and state of reservoir evaporation as a follow on from the Reservoir Evaporation Workshop held at CU Boulder in Fall, 2015. The full interview can be heard here.

Prof. Ben Livneh interviewed by the Denver Post

December 30th, 2015: West's Water Reservoir Managers Face Big Losses From Evaporation. The full article can be found here. Interview by Bruce Finlay

Livneh research group at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting:

December 18th, 2015: Below are a list of presentations and sessions contributed by the group.

Livneh B., M.P. Hoerling, A.M. Badger, J. Eischeid, and R. Webb, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec. 2015:Assessing Causes of Hydrologic Extremes in the Upper Missouri Basin. Session Natural Hazards: Flood Risk Management in a Changing World II.

Livneh B., J.S. Deems, B. Buma, J.R. Stewart, J.J. Barsulgi, D. Schneider, N.P. Molotch, C.A. Wessman, and K. Wolter, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec. 2015: Hydrologic impacts of land cover disturbances in the Upper Colorado River Basin. Session Cryosphere: Dust, Black Carbon, and Other Aerosols in the Cryosphere II.

Barnhart, B., Livneh B.,  N.P. Molotch, J. Knowles, A.A. Harpold, and D. Schneider, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec. 2015: Rapid Snowmelt Leads to Greater Streamflow Across the Western United States.

Hoerling, M.P., and Livneh B., American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec. 2015: The Physics of Great Plains Drought.

Buma B., and Livneh B., American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec. 2015: Quantifying the Sensitivity of Water Yield to Forest Disturbances Across a Diverse Set of Unmanaged Watersheds throughout the Continential United States.

M. Yanto, B. Livneh, B. Rajagopalan, and J.R. Kasprzyk, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec. 2015: Hydrologic Modeling and Parameter Estimation under Data Scarcity for Java Island, Indonesia.

Kim J, Cifelli R., Johnson L.E., Livneh, B., and V. Chandrasekar, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec. 2015: Effect of Rainfall Spatial Distribution on Flood Forecasting in Complex Terrain.

Cheng L., Hoerling M.P., Aghakouchak A., Livneh B., Qian X-W., Eischeid J, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Dec.2015: How Has Human-induced Climate Change Affected California Drought Risk?

Convened Session: Livneh B., S. Shukla, A.A. Harpold and S. Kumar: Understanding the Extent and Impacts of Land Use/Land Cover Change on Hydrology. See abstracts: H11I PostersH13S Oral.

Press Release: New funded project on watershed disturbance responses, water treatment and decision making for the Livneh research group

November 10th, 2015: Official press release from the EPA about our project related to wateshed response to forest disturbance, flooding, drought, drinking water treatment and decision making, in collaboration with other researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder, and the Water Research Foundation (WRF)

The project is lead by Kenan Ozekin, from WRF.  There is an exciting team of researchers at CU Boulder, lead by Rajagopalan Balaji, including myself, Joseph Kasprzyk, Fernando Rosario-Ortiz, and Scott Summers. The motivation for the work is understanding how climate change and other extreme events challenge drinking water utilities’ ability to treat water to meet regulatory and public health protection goals.

Reservoir Evaporation Workshop - 22-23 Oct. 2015, CU Boulder, co-organized by Prof. Ben Livneh

October 19th, 2015: This workshop will bring together recognized experts in the field of atmospheric science, hydrology, land use, and water resource managers. The overarching workshop goal is the development of a science plan for action to improve estimates of reservoir evaporation. The regional focus of the workshop includes reservoirs in western North America, as attendees from the Colorado River system, California, Nevada, and Saskatchewan Canada will bring their regional perspectives.

Cheng L., M.P. Hoerling, A. AghaKouchak, B. Livneh, and X-W. Qian, 2015: Current Effects of Human-induced Climate Change on California Drought, Journal of Climate (accepted).

Raleigh, M.S., B. Livneh, K. Lapo and J.D. Lundquist, 2015: How does availability of meteorological forcing data impact physically-based snowpack simulations in different climates? Journal of Hydrometeorology (accepted).

Livneh B., R. Kumar, and L. Samaniego, 2015: Influence of Soil Textural Properties on Hydrologic Fluxes in the Mississippi River Basin, Hydrological Processes (accepted).

Mizukami N., M.P. Clark, E.D. Gutmann, P.A. Mendoza, A.J. Newman, B. Livneh, B. Nijssen, L. Hay, L.D. Brekke and J.R. Arnold, 2015: Implications of the methodological choices for hydrologic portrayals over the Contiguous United States: statistically downscaled forcing data and hydrologic models, Journal of Hydrometeorology (accepted).

Lundquist J.D., M. Hughes, B. Henn, E. Gutmann, and B. Livneh, J. Dozier, and P. Neiman, 2015: High-elevation precipitation patterns: using snow measurements to diagnose when and why gridded datasets succeed or fail across the Sierra Nevada, California, Journal of Hydrometeorology (accepted).

Livneh B., T.J. Bohn, D.S. Pierce, F. Munoz-Ariola, B. Nijssen, R. Vose, D. Cayan, and L.D. Brekke, 2015: A spatially comprehensive, hydrometeorological data set for Mexico, the U.S., and southern Canada 1950-2013, Nature Scientific Data, 5:150042, doi:10.1038/sdata.2015.42.

Buma B., and B. Livneh, 2015: Potential effects of forest disturbances and management on water resources in a warmer climate, Forest Science, http://dx.doi.org/10.5849/forsci.14-164.

Livneh B., J.S. Deems, B. Buma, J.J. Barsugli, D. Schneider, N.P. Molotch, K. Wolter, and C.A. Wessman, 2015: Catchment Response to Bark Beetle Outbreak in the Upper Colorado River Basin, Journal of Hydrology 523,196–210.

Pal, I., E. Towler, and B. Livneh, 2015: Advancing the Science of Low Flows in a Changing Climate, Eos Opinion, AGU, 96, doi:10.1029/2015EO033875.

Chen F., M. Barlage , M. Tiwari , R. Rasmussen , J. Jin , D.P. Lettenmaier, B. Livneh, C. Lin , G. Michuez-Macho , G-Y. Niu , L. Wen , Z-L. Yang, 2014: Modeling seasonal snowpack evolution in the complex terrain and forested Colorado Headwaters region: A model inter-comparison study, Journal of Geophysical Research, 119(13), 13,795-13,819, doi:10.1002/2014JD022167.

Livneh, B., J. S. Deems, D. Schneider, J. Barsugli, and N. Molotch, 2014: Filling in the gaps: Inferring spatially distributed precipitation from gauge observations over complex terrain, Water Resour. Res., 50, doi:10.1002/2014WR015442.

Kumar, S.V., C.D. Peters-Lidard, D. Mocko, Y. Liu, K. Arsenault, Y. Xia, M.B. Ek, G. Riggs, B. Livneh, and M., Cosh, 2014: Assimilation of passive microwave-based soil moisture and snow depth retrievals for drought estimation, Journal of Hydrometeorology, 10.1175/JHM-D-13-0132.1.

Livneh B., E.A. Rosenberg, C. Lin, B. Nijssen, V. Mishra, K.M. Andreadis, E.P. Maurer, and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2013: A Long-Term Hydrologically Based Dataset of Land Surface Fluxes and States for the Conterminous United States: Update and Extensions, Journal of Climate, 26, 9384–9392.

Kumar, R., B. Livneh, and L. Samaniego, 2013: Towards computationally efficient large-scale hydrologic predictions with the multi-scale regionalization scheme, Water Resources Research, 49(9), 5700-5714.

Xia Y., M. B. Ek, J. Sheffield, B. Livneh, H. Wei, S. Feng, L. Luo, J. Meng, and E. Wood, 2013: Validation of Noah-simulated Soil temperature in the North American Land Data Assimilation System Phase 2, Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 52, 455–471.

Bohn, T. J., B. Livneh, J. W. Oyler, S. W. Running, B. Nijssen, and D. P. Lettenmaier, 2013: Global evaluation of MTCLIM and related algorithms for forcing of ecological and hydrological models, Agriculture Forest Meteorology, 176, 38-49, doi:10.1016/j.agrformet.2013.03.003.

Livneh B., and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2013: Regional parameter estimation for the Unified Land Model, Water Resources Research, doi:10.1029/2012WR012220.

Sheffield, J., B. Livneh, and E.F. Wood, 2012: Representation of Terrestrial Hydrology and Large Scale Drought of the Continental US from the North American Regional Reanalysis, Journal of Hydrometeorology, 13, 856–876, doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JHM-D-11-065.1.

Livneh, B. and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2012: Multi-criteria parameter estimation for the unified land model, Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 16, 3029-3048, doi:10.5194/hess-16-3029-2012.

Mahanama, S.P., B. Livneh, R.D. Koster, D.P. Lettenmaier, and R.H. Reichle, 2012: Soil Moisture, Snow, and Seasonal Streamflow Forecasts in the United States, Journal of Hydrometeorology, 13, 189-203, 10.1175/JHM-D-11-046.1.

Xia Y., K. Mitchell, M. Ek, J. Sheffield, B. Cosgrove, L. Luo, C. Alonge, H. Wei, J. Meng, B. Livneh, D.P. Lettenmaier, V. Koren, Q. Duan, K. Mo, Y. Fan, and D. Mocko, 2012: Continental-scale water and energy flux analysis and validation for the North American Land Data Assimilation System Project Phase 2 (NLDAS-2), part 1: intercomparison and application of model products, Journal of Geophysical Research, 117, doi:10.1029/2011JD016048.

Xia Y., K. Mitchell, M. Ek, B. Cosgrove, J. Sheffield, L. Luo, C. Alonge, H. Wei, J. Meng, B. Livneh, Q. Duan, and D. Lohmann, 2012: Continental-scale water and energy flux analysis and validation for the North American Land Data Assimilation System Project Phase 2 (NLDAS-2), part 2: Validation of Model-simulated streamflow, Journal of Geophysical Research, 117, doi:10.1029/2011JD016051.

Livneh, B., P.J. Restrepo, and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2011: Development of a Unified Land Model for prediction of surface hydrology and land-atmosphere interactions, Journal of Hydrometeorology, 12(6), 1299-1320, 10.1175/2011JHM1361.1.

Koster, R.D., S.P. Mahanama, B. Livneh, D.P. Lettenmaier, and R.H. Reichle, 2010: Skill in Streamflow Forecasts Derived from Large-Scale Estimates of Soil Moisture and Snow, Nature Geoscience doi.10.1038/ngeo944.

Livneh, B., Y. Xia, K.E. Mitchell, M.B. Ek, and D.P. Lettenmaier, 2010: Noah LSM Snow Model Diagnostics and Enhancements, Journal of Hydrometeorology, 11(3), 721-738.

Barlage, M., F. Chen, M. Tewari, K. Ikeda, D. Gochis, J. Dudhia, R. Rasmussen, B. Livneh, M. Ek, and K. Mitchell, 2010: Noah Land Surface Model Modifications to Improve Snowpack Prediction in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, Journal of Geophysical Research, 115, doi:10.1029/2010JD13470.

Casola, J.H., L. Cuo, B. Livneh, D.P. Lettenmaier, M. Stoelinga, P.W. Mote and J. M. Wallace, 2009: Assessing the Impacts of Global Warming on Snowpack in the Washington Cascades, Journal of Climate, 22(10), 2758-2772.

Munoz-Arriola, F., S. Shukla, T. Bohn, C. Zhu, B. Livneh, D.P. Lettenmaier, R. Lobato-Sanchez, A. Wagner-Gomez, 2009. Prediccion de la Hidrologia Superficial en Norte America, Resumen del Clima de la Frontera , Julio 13: 1-5.

Livneh B., and M.H. El Naggar, 2008: Axial testing and numerical modeling of square shaft helical piles under compressive and tensile loading, Canadian Geotechnical Journal, 45(8),1142-1155.

CVEN-5363 Modeling of Hydrologic Systems

Introduces students to modeling techniques. Focus areas include physical hydrology and hydrometeorology; measurement and inference; climate change impacts; role of scale in hydrology; uncertainty analysis; and a case study project. Projects will examine hydrologic impacts of various drivers such as climate warming or land cover change, utilizing an assessment of historic conditions to better understand and model future disturbance scenarios. 

Members of the Livneh Research Group

Contact

Ben Livneh

Address

Campus Box 216 UCB, Ekeley S250C, University of Colorado, Boulder 80309, USA

Links