Water Quality Modeling of Key Largo Coral Reef

by Raymond Walton, Camp Dresser & McKee, Annandale, VA, USA,
Larry A. Roesner, Camp Dresser & McKee, Annandale, VA, USA,
Ming P. Wang, Camp Dresser & McKee, Annandale, VA, USA,
W. Martin Williams, Camp Dresser & McKee, Annandale, VA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Computer Applications in Water Resources


A numerical model called CORALSIM has been developed for the Key Largo Coral Reef National Marine Sanctuary in the Florida Keys. The model was developed as a management tool to study the potential impacts on the coral reef due to man's activities. Since we are concerned with the health of the reef ecosystem, the authors selected model state variables that best represent measures of this health. For coral reefs, this may be represented by carbon exchanges between the reef system and its surrounding environment. The model was calibrated and verified to current meter, water quality, and primary productivity data collected during the study. The development of the model is significant because it will enable NOAA to postulate activities, investigate their consequence, and avoid harm to the reef through anticipatory mangement practices. The model is in an early stage of evolution.

Subject Headings: Reefs and sills | Numerical models | Water quality | Mathematical models | Water pollution | Carbon fibers | Aquatic habitats | Florida | United States

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