Skip Links

USGS - science for a changing world

Open-File Report 2013–1157

Land Change in the Central Corn Belt Plains Ecoregion and Hydrologic Consequences in Developed Areas—1939–2000

By Krista Karstensen, David Shaver, Randal Alexander, Thomas Over, and David Soong

Thumbnail of report PDF (12.9 MB)


This report emphasizes the importance of a multi-disciplinary understanding of how land use and land cover can affect regional hydrology by collaboratively investigating how increases in developed land area may affect stream discharge by evaluating

  • Land-cover change from 1939 to 2000,
  • Urban housing density data from 1940 to 2010, and
  • Changes in annual peak streamflow from water years 1945 to 2009.
The results and methods crosscut two mission areas of the U.S. Geological Survey (Climate and Land Use, Water) and can be used to better assess developed land change and hydrologic consequences, which can be used to better assess future management and mitigation strategies.

First posted August 19, 2013

For additional information contact:
Director, Earth Resources Observation and Science Center
U.S. Geological Survey
47914 252nd Street
Sioux Falls, SD 57198

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge.

Suggested citation:

Karstensen, K.A., Shaver, D.K., Alexander, R.L, Over, T.M., and Soong, D., 2013, Land change in the Central Corn Belt Plains Ecoregion and hydrologic consequences in developed areas—1939–2000: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2013–1157, 21 p.,




Study Area


Summary of Land Change in the Central Corn Belt Plains—1939–2000

Drivers and Consequences of Land-Cover Change

Case Study: Urbanization Effects on Flood Flows in the Chicago Area

Future Steps


References Cited

Land-Cover Class Descriptions

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices

Take Pride in America logo logo U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
Page Contact Information: GS Pubs Web Contact
Page Last Modified: Monday, 06-Feb-2017 14:31:13 EST