About this Volume
The Central United States experienced record-setting flooding during 2011, with floods that extended from headwater streams in the Rocky Mountains, to transboundary rivers in the upper Midwest and Northern Plains, to the deep and wide sand-bedded lower Mississippi River. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), as part of its mission, collected extensive information during and in the aftermath of the 2011 floods to support scientific analysis of the origins and consequences of extreme floods. The information collected for the 2011 floods, combined with decades of past data, enables scientists and engineers from the USGS to provide syntheses and scientific analyses to inform emergency managers, planners, and policy makers about life-safety, economic, and environmental-health issues surrounding flood hazards for the 2011 floods and future floods like it. USGS data, information, and scientific analyses provide context and understanding of the effect of floods on complex societal issues such as ecosystem and human health, flood-plain management, climate-change adaptation, economic security, and the associated policies enacted for mitigation.
Among the largest societal questions is "How do we balance agricultural, economic, life-safety, and environmental needs in and along our rivers?" To address this issue, many scientific questions have to be answered including the following:
- How do the 2011 weather and flood conditions compare to the past weather and flood conditions and what can we reasonably expect in the future for flood magnitudes?
- What is the “natural” hydrology of these watersheds and how have they been changed?
- How do rivers change during floods and what effects do they have on the natural and built environment: conversely, what effects do the natural and built environments have on rivers and floods?
- Do floods contribute to the transport and fate of contaminants that affect human and ecosystem health?
In an effort to help address these and other questions, USGS Professional Paper 1798 consists of independent but complementary chapters dealing with various scientific aspects of the 2011 floods in the Central United States.
Chapters in this Series
The links below provide more information and a download link for each chapter document.
General Weather Conditions and Precipitation Contributing to the 2011 Flooding in the Mississippi River and Red River of the North Basins, December 2010 through July 2011
By Kevin C. Vining, Katherine J. Chase, and Gina R. Loss
Peak Streamflows and Runoff Volumes for the Central United States, February through September, 2011
By Robert R. Holmes, Jr., Gregg J. Wiche, Todd A. Koenig, and Steven K. Sando
Annual Exceedance Probabilities and Trends for Peak Streamflows and Annual Runoff Volumes for the Central United States During the 2011 Floods
By Daniel G. Driscoll, Rodney E. Southard, Todd A. Koenig, David A. Bender, and Robert R. Holmes, Jr.
Documenting the Stages and Streamflows Associated With the 2011 Activation of the New Madrid Floodway, Missouri
By Todd A. Koenig and Robert R. Holmes, Jr.
Sediment Transport and Deposition in the Lower Missouri River During the 2011 Flood
By Jason S. Alexander, Robert B. Jacobson, and David L. Rus
Occurrence and Transport of Nutrients in the Missouri River Basin, April through September 2011
By Stephen J. Kalkhoff
Geomorphic Changes Caused by the 2011 Flood at Selected Sites Along the Lower Missouri River and Comparison to Historical Floods
By Kyle E. Juracek
Geomorphic Change on the Missouri River During the Flood of 2011
By Edward R. Schenk, Katherine J. Skalak, Adam J. Benthem, Benjamin J. Dietsch, Brenda K. Woodward, Gregg J. Wiche, Joel M. Galloway, Rochelle A. Nustad, and Cliff R. Hupp
Monitoring of Levees, Bridges, Pipelines, and Other Critical Infrastructure During the 2011 Flooding in the Mississippi River Basin
By Brenda K. Densmore, Bethany L. Burton, Benjamin J. Dietsch, James C. Cannia, and Richard J. Huizinga
The Effects of Missouri River Mainstem Reservoir System Operations on 2011 Flooding Using a Precipitation-Runoff Modeling System Model
By Adel E. Haj, Daniel E. Christiansen, and Roland J. Viger
Ecosystem Effects in the Lower Mississippi River Basin
By D. Phil Turnipseed, Yvonne C. Allen, Brady R. Couvillion, Karen L. McKee, and William C. Vervaeke
First posted August 5, 2013