Citation
A study of phosphorus release into surface waters along the South Platte River, following the application of firetrol lca-r retardant to the May 21, 2002 Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado

Material Information

Title:
A study of phosphorus release into surface waters along the South Platte River, following the application of firetrol lca-r retardant to the May 21, 2002 Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado
Creator:
Marty, Kathleen Ann
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
48 leaves : illustrations ; 28 cm

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Water -- Pollution -- South Platte River (Colo. and Neb.) ( lcsh )
Fireproofing agents ( lcsh )
Water -- Phosphorus content -- South Platte River (Colo. and Neb.) ( lcsh )
Fireproofing agents ( fast )
Water -- Phosphorus content ( fast )
Water -- Pollution ( fast )
United States -- South Platte River ( fast )
Genre:
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

Notes

Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 46-48).
General Note:
Integrated Sciences Program
Statement of Responsibility:
by Kathleen Ann Marty.

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Source Institution:
University of Colorado Denver
Holding Location:
Auraria Library
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
54522898 ( OCLC )
ocm54522898
Classification:
LD1190.L584 2003m M37 ( lcc )

Full Text
A STUDY OF PHOSPHORUS RELEASE INTO SURFACE WATERS ALONG
THE SOUTH PLATTE RIVER, FOLLOWING THE APPLICATION OF FIRE-
TROL LCA-R FIRE RETARDANT TO THE MAY 21,2002 SCHOONOVER
FIRE NEAR DECKERS, COLORADO,
by
Kathleen Ann Marty
B.S., University of Colorado at Denver, 1997
A thesis submitted to the
University of Colorado at Denver
in partial fulfillment
of the requirements for the degree of
Master of Integrated Sciences
2003
L
iH f


This thesis for the Master of Integrated Sciences
degree by
Kathleen Ann Marty
has been approved
by
Doris Kimbrough


Marty, Kathleen Ann (MIS, Integrated Sciences)
A STUDY OF PHOSPHORUS RELEASE INTO SURFACE WATERS ALONG
THE SOUTH PLATTE RIVER, FOLLOWING THE APPLICATION OF FIRE-
TROL LCA-R FIRE RETARDANT TO THE MAY 21,2002 SCHOONOVER
FIRE NEAR DECKERS, COLORADO.
Thesis directed by Professor Wesley Le Masurier
ABSTRACT
This thesis attempts to address the question: Do applications of
phosphorus-based chemical fire retardants release phosphorus into nearby
surface water? As of March 2003, the U.S. Forest Service had few records
of where the chemical fire retardant has been used. Therefore, the effects of
its use are difficult to track, quantify, and study.
The study area is in Central Colorado within the Pike National Forest. The
main river system that drains the area is the South Platte River. The region
has a semi-arid climate with an average annual rainfall of 16.51 inches.
However, because of the recent drought conditions overall precipitation
during the study period was below normal. This may have had a significant
affect on the amount of phosphorus migrating from the study area.
Ninety-three water quality samples were collected at three sites along the
South Platte River for nine months following the Schoonover Fire.
Comparison of water-quality information from these three sites, characterize
the water quality in the area affected by the fire; and the fire retardant. The
following parameters were analyzed:
phosphorus concentrations, as total phosphorus,
turbidity,
dissolved oxygen, and
total dissolved solids.
in


Overall, total phosphorus concentrations in the study area were below the 0.1
mg/L limit set by the EPA except in two instances. Phosphorus
concentrations between the sites do not vary significantly.
Based on the data I conclude that the phosphorus contained in the Fire-Trol
LCA-r retardant did not migrate into the South Platte during this study.
Considering the size of the bum within this area water quality was not heavily
impacted. This either is a result of the lack of precipitation or is because the
soil type may have stopped the phosphorus from migrating.
Further research should be done to determine if the phosphorus would
migrate during normal levels of precipitation. Also, leaching experiments
should be done to see how the retardant interacts with the different soils
found along the Front Range.
This abstract accurately represents the content of the candidates thesis. I
IV


CONTENTS
Figures.......................................................vii
Tables........................................................viii
CHAPTER
1. INTRODUCTION...........................................1
Fire-Trol LCA-r Chemical Fire Retardant.............1
Phosphorus Cycle....................................2
Phosphorus in Soil Solution...................3
Phosphorus as Particulate Matter..............3
Phosphorus Migration..........................4
What Affects Phosphorus Fixation in Soil?...........4
Preexisting Phosphorus Concentrations.........5
Soil pH levels................................5
Why is Phosphorus from Runoff and Erosion a Concern?.... 6
Why is Eutrophication a Concern?....................6
2. DESCRIPTION OF STUDY AREA..............................8
Water Quality Standards.............................8
Climate............................................10
Geology............................................11
3. METHODS OF DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS...............13
Location of Sampling Sites.........................13
Water Quality Parameters...........................15
Phosphorus Concentration.....................15
Turbidity....................................16
Dissolved Oxygen.............................16
Total Dissolved Solids (TDS).................17


Quality Assurance/Quality Control................18
Methods of Sampling..............................18
4. RESULTS.............................................19
Total Phosphorus.................................19
Turbidity........................................22
Dissolved Oxygen................................ 23
Total Dissolved Solids...........................26
5. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS.....................28
APPENDIX
A. Water Quality Data..................................30
B. Precipitation Data..................................34
C. Discharge Data......................................44
REFERENCES...................................................46
VI


FIGURES
Figure
1. The Phosphorus Cycle...........................................3
2. Phosphorus Migration Diagram...................................6
3. Map of Schoonover Fire Study Area with Zones of Retardant
Drops and Sampling Sites......................................9
4. Daily Precipitation near Deckers, Colorado from July 2002 -
March 2003...................................................12
5. Total Phosphorus Concentrations Along the South Platte River for
9 Months following the Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.20
6. Discharge from the South Platte River for 9 Months following the
Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.......................21
7. Turbidity Along the South Platte River for 9 Months following the
Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.......................24
8. Dissolved Oxygen Levels Along the South Platte River for 9
Months following the Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado...25
9. Total Dissolved Solids Along the South Platte River for 9 Months
following the Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.........27
vii


TABLES
Table
1. Composition of Fire-Trol LCA-r Chemical Fire Retardant...........2
2. Water-quality Data from the South Platte River Site 1 (Control)
for Sampling Dates 7/11/02 3/8/03.............................31
3. Water-quality Data from the South Platte River Site 2 for
Sampling Dates 7/11/02 3/8/03.................................32
4. Water-quality Data from the South Platte River Site 3 for
Sampling Dates 7/11/02 3/8/03.................................33
5. Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers,
Colorado from July thru March 2003..............................35
6. Discharge Data from the South Platte River near Deckers,
Colorado from July thru March 2003..............................45
viii


CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
The use of chemical retardants to combat forest fires and its affect on the
environment is of great concern. A decade of increasing drought conditions
throughout Colorado led (in 2002) to some of the largest wildfires in Colorado
history. This thesis attempts to address the question: Do applications of
phosphorus-based chemical fire retardants release phosphorus into nearby
surface water? Answering this question could lead to improved forest
management policies and practices. This report examines the hypothesis
that the phosphorus found in the Fire-Trol LCA-r retardant migrates into the
South Platte River following its application on the Schoonover Fire in May
2002, and may have had a significant affect on the water quality in the South
Platte River near Deckers, Colorado.
Fire-Trol LCA-r Chemical Fire Retardant
As of March 2003, the U.S. Forest Service has limited records of where the
chemical fire retardant has been used. Therefore, the affects of its use are
difficult to track, quantify, and study. Fire-Trol LCA-r is the chemical retardant
most commonly used in Colorado. It consists of 77.4 percent ammonium
polyphosphate fertilizer by weight (Table 1) and 22.6 percent other
ingredients such as iron oxide for color, attapulgite clay as a thickener, and
sodium ferrocyanide as a corrosion inhibitor (United States Patent and
Trademark Office 1999). l
l


Table 1 Composition of Fire-Trol LCA-r Chemical Fire Retardant
Chemical name Empirical formula Percent by weight in liquid concentrate
Firetrol LCA-R
Ammonium polyphosphate (NH4)x(P04)y 77.4
Attapulgite clay 10.0
Titanium Oxide Ti02 2.0
Iron Oxide Fe203 0.6
Sodium ferrocyanide Na4Fe(CN)6 10.0
Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office 1999
It is mixed with water for delivery over a fire, which also aids in uniform
dispersal of the retardant over a selected area. The fertilizer used in the
retardant is ammonium polyphosphate (APP), an inorganic salt of
polyphosphoric acid and ammonia (European Flame Retardants Association
2001).
Phosphorus Cycle
Many factors affect phosphorus fluctuations (Figure 1); for the purposes of
this study, the two forms of phosphorus discussed are:
phosphorus migrating from soil solution ( HPO^"2 H2PO4'1)
phosphorus migrating as particulate matter (Ca, Fe, Mn, Al
phosphates)
2


Figure 1 The Phosphorus Cycle
The Phosphorus Cycle
Source: Mississippi State University: Potash and Phosphorus Institute 2003.
Phosphorus in Soil Solution
Phosphorus found in soil solution (dissolved in soil water) increases as
phosphorus is weathered from minerals such as apatite, is desorbed from
mineral surfaces, is dissolved from secondary compounds such as iron
phosphate, is mineralized from organic phosphorus and from the addition of
mineral fertilizers. Leaching, precipitation of secondary compounds, plant
uptake, runoff, and erosion decrease the phosphorus found in soil solution
(Figure 1).
Phosphorus as Particulate Matter
Phosphorus attached to particulate matter can be transported into surface
water through erosion and runoff as organic phosphorus from plant residue
3


such as ash, as a primary mineral such as apatite, or as a secondary
compound, such as iron phosphate (Figure 1). While this phosphorus is
fixed and unavailable for immediate uptake by aquatic life, this form of
phosphorus can affect water quality by increasing turbidity in the area and the
fixed phosphorus can be transform[ed] into orthophosphate and [become]
available for plant uptake (Wilkes University 2003).
Phosphorus Migration
Agricultural studies by Sharpley et al (1999) show that phosphorus loss in
agricultural runoff... amounts to 1 to 2 percent of the P [phosphorus]
applied. Surviving plant species absorb about 20 percent of the phosphate
released from the burning of vegetation during a fire (Hauer and Spencer
1998). Combine this phosphate with the phosphate that is lost from the
retardant and that can amount to a large phosphorus load. This remaining
phosphorus may react with the iron, aluminum, manganese, and calcium
found naturally in the soil to form relatively insoluble substances such as a
calcium phosphate and be carried to the surface water as particulate matter
or be transported in soil water as dissolved phosphorus (McConnel 1973).
What Affects Phosphorus Fixation in Soil?
The form in which the phosphorus is fixed in the soil is affected by preexisting
soil concentrations and soil pH (Tunney et al. 1997).
4


Preexisting Soil Phosphorus Concentrations
The concentration of phosphorus found in soils is directly related to the
mineralogy of the area. The mineral apatite is an important source of
phosphorus and can be found in igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary
rocks (McConnel 1973). Phosphorus bearing soils weathered from rocks that
lack apatite; except for those deposited chemically in aqueous environments
are likely to have lower concentrations of phosphorus than those that contain
apatite (Tunney et al 1997). In soils with phosphorus levels greater or equal
to that required by vegetation, adding phosphorus from the use of fire
retardants could have a significant impact on the migration of the phosphorus
in the retardant from the soil into surface water (University of Maryland 1997).
Soil pH Levels
Depending on pH levels of the soil, the phosphate from the retardant and the
bum will combine with aluminum, iron, manganese, or calcium in the soil and
be chemically bound to soil particles (Sharpley et al 1999). These particles
can be transported via runoff (Figure 2) and phosphorus levels and water
quality can be affected (Sharpley et al 1999). If pH levels are too low or too *
high for the phosphorus to precipitate the phosphorus will remain unfixed, will
exist in solution, may be transported as dissolved phosphorus, and will be
available for immediate uptake by aquatic organisms.
5


Figure 2 Phosphorus Migration Diagram
Source: Sharpley et al, 1999
Why is Phosphorus from Runoff and Erosion a Concern?
Although the phosphorus needs of plants are most critical in the earliest
growth stages, such as immediately following a fire, soil in burned areas has
a high risk of erosion since the vegetation previously holding the soil in place
has been removed (Sharpley et al 1999). Phosphorus from runoff and
erosion can affect phosphorus levels in surface waters and may contribute to
eutrophication. As shown in Figure 2 phosphorus can be eroded or leached
from soil and plants, either in solution or as particulate matter into surface
water.
Why is Eutrophication a Concern?
Eutrophication is water pollution caused by excessive plant nutrients."
(National Eutrophication Management Program 2002). In a closed system,
the amount of phosphorus available limits the amount of algae that can be
sustained (Wetzel 2000). Eutrophication occurs when excessive phosphorus
from runoff and erosion fertilizes surface water, causing algal blooms. When
6


the algae die, they decompose removing dissolved oxygen from the water
(Wetzel 2000). Low oxygen levels make it difficult for aquatic organisms to
survive, causing large-scale fish kills (National Eutrophication Management
Program 2002). Waters that have experienced eutrophication are not
capable of sustaining aquatic life and can produce adverse physiological
response in humans... and have an adverse affect on the beneficial values
of the waters downstream (Environmental Protection Agency 2002).
Phosphorus from the use of chemical fire retardants may contribute to
eutrophication; therefore, the extent of phosphorus movement from the
application site to surface water must be evaluated.
7


CHAPTER 2
DESCRIPTION OF STUDY AREA
The study area is in Central Colorado within the Pike National Forest and the
main river system that drains the area is the South Platte River (Figure 3).
Dendritic drainage patterns are well developed, and most of the area is of
moderate to high relief. Cheesman Mountain, at 7,933 feet, is the highest
elevation in the study area. The lowest elevation is along the South Platte
River near Deckers at approximately 6,495 feet.
Water Quality Standards
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE)
assigns numerical standards that protect Colorado water based on the
classification assigned by the Colorado Water Quality Commission. Each
classification is linked to specific water quality parameters under the law.
Although the State of Colorado does not have specific phosphorus standards,
the CDPHE has designated that the South Platte at Deckers must be
"... capable of sustaining such biota where ...
water quality conditions result in no substantial
impairment of the abundance and diversity of
species.
This is important because excess phosphorus has been shown to have a
negative affect on water quality and the abundance of aquatic life
(Environmental Protection Agency 2002). Therefore, the EPA suggests that
the following criteria be adopted with respect to nutrient concentrations:
8


Figure 3 Map of the Schoonover Fire Study Area with Zones of Retardant
Drops and Sampling Sites
105 15.000' W
WGS84 10514.000' W
Created using TOPO 2002
9
39 14.000' N 39 15.000' N


No increase in nutrient concentrations over
reference conditions.
No change in the macro invertebrate community
due to an increase in nutrients.
Free from excess nutrients that cause or
contribute to undesirable or nuisance aquatic life
or produce adverse physiological response in
humans, animals, or plants.
There shall be no increase, in any waters, of total
phosphorous above background conditions that
may contribute to the acceleration of
eutrophication or the stimulation of the growth of
aquatic biota in a manner that has an undue
adverse effect on any beneficial values or uses of
any adjacent or downstream waters.
Nutrient criteria, such as phosphorus, are established based on water body
type: streams/rivers and lakes/reservoirs (Colorado Department of Public
Health and Environment 2002). If phosphorus concentrations in the study
area were to increase above 0.1 mg/L, eutrophication could occur, which
would affect local aquatic life (Environmental Protection Agency 2002).
Climate
The region has a semi-arid climate with an average annual rainfall of 16.51
inches. Thirty-nine percent of the annual total precipitation occurs in spring,
31 percent occurs in summer (particularly July and August), 19 percent
occurs in autumn, and approximately 11 percent and almost all of its snow
occurs in winter (Western Regional Climate Center 2003). Snowmelt runoff
usually is from April through July; it peaks in May and June (Western
Regional Climate Center 2003).
10


However, because of the recent drought overall precipitation during the study
period was well below normal. Figure 4 shows the daily precipitation
amounts recorded during the study period. This may have a significant effect
on the amount of phosphorus migration found. Average annual temperature
varies from approximately 35F at the highest elevations to higher than 44F
at lower elevations (Western Regional Climate Center 2003). The natural
vegetation in the study area is strongly zoned by altitude with forests of
Douglas fir and Ponderosa pine at higher elevations and forests of
cottonwood and box elder along the South Platte River (United States
Department of Agriculture 1992).
Geology
The geological map by Moore et al., 2001 shows that precambrian Pikes
Peak Granite, pink, medium-grained biotite granite, composes the bedrock in
the study area. The soils weathered from the Pikes Peak Granite are
shallow, somewhat excessively drained soils that have a high risk of sheet
erosion (United States Department of Agriculture 1992). In the area where
the retardant was applied, vegetation and forest litter cover 40 to 65 percent
of the predominant soil type, which is Sphinx gravelly coarse sandy loam
(United States Department of Agriculture 1992). Runoff is swift, and the
hazard of water erosion is severe, especially when the cover plants and forest
litter are disturbed. (United States Department of Agriculture 1992).


Precipitation (Inches)
Figure 4 Daily Precipitation near Deckers, Colorado from July 2002 March 2003.
2.5
2
1.5
Date
Daily Precipitation
Source: National Climatic Data Center, 2003


CHAPTER 3
METHODS OF DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS
Location of Sampling Sites
Water-quality samples were collected and water-quality measurements made
at each site, along the South Platte River for nine months, following the
Schoonover Fire (July 2002 March 2003). Historical water quality data are
not available for these locations. Denver Water does some water quality
measurements upstream at Cheesman Reservoir; however, they are most
concerned with turbidity readings, as this most affects the filtering process
that the water must go through before it is suitable for consumption (Dahm
2002). The fact that there are no historical data for this area, combined with
the fact that the Hayman Fire, the largest fire in Colorado history, burned
around the Schoonover bum area, made site selection difficult. While it would
have been best to have a sampling area that was unburned and untreated,
this was not possible.
The farthest upstream sampling site, on the South Platte River is just
upstream from the Wigwam Club (site 1), which is the control site (Figure 3).
Site 1 was selected as the control site based on the following factors:
1. It was located on accessible public property.
2. The fire did not burn this section all the way to the banks of the South
Platte.
13


Site 2 was located within the bum area in an untreated section just west of
the retardant drop. Site 2 was selected to represent the burned, untreated
area because the retardant that was dropped just downstream from here, and
should not affect the phosphorus concentration at this site, because the
slopes and the drainage are generally to the northeast, towards site 3 (Figure
3).
Site 3 was directly downstream from the retardant application area just
upstream from the Four-mile creek. Site 3 was selected to represent the
burned, treated area (Figure 3) because
1. The retardant was observed being dropped at in this area
during the fire.
2. The drops of the retardant were close to the river, without being
dropped directly into the river or within the 3 meters designated
on the chemical retardant instructions
3. The natural drainage in the area around the retardant drop
would cause the phosphorus in the retardant to migrate towards
this Site.
Comparison of water-quality information from these three sites, characterize
the water quality in the area affected by the fire; and the fire retardant, and
provide perspective on the affect Fire-Trol LCA-r had on phosphorus levels
within the river, which is reflected in the differences between sites 2 and 3.
14


Water Quality Parameters
Many constituents and characteristics can be analyzed to determine water
quality. The following parameters were analyzed to determine, if the use of
phosphorus-based chemical fire retardants increases the amount of
phosphorus migrating into surface water following application and the affect
that this migration has on water quality:
phosphorus concentrations, as total phosphorus,
turbidity,
dissolved oxygen, and
total dissolved solids (TDS).
Phosphorus Concentration
The two forms of phosphorus most commonly measured in water are;
dissolved reactive phosphorus and total phosphorus (Murphy 2002).
Dissolved reactive phosphorus indicates phosphorus that is immediately
available for biological uptake; however, total phosphorus is considered the
best indicator of water quality and therefore, is the form of phosphorus
analyzed in this study (Murphy 2002). Samples for phosphorus analysis were
collected by the equal-width-integrated (EWI) method and stored in high
density polyethylene (HDPE) bottles, washed with a phosphorus-free soap
and then rinsed in sequence, with a 5-percent hydrochloric acid solution,
deionized water, and stream water at the site (Shelton 1994). Nutrient
samples were chilled to approximately 4 degrees Celsius and were analyzed
within 30 days from collection. Before sample collection, all sample
15


equipment was cleaned, according to U.S. Geological Survey-Water Quality
Laboratory procedures. This procedure includes a soak and wash in a non-
phosphorus detergent, soak and rinse in a 5-percent hydrochloric acid
solution, and a final soak and rinse in deionized water. Phosphorus analysis
was done in the laboratory using the PhosVer 3 with Acid Persulfate
Digestion Method (Method 8190) and subsequently, analyzed using a HACH
DR/850 Colorimeter.
Turbidity
"Turbidity is a measure of the cloudiness of water- the cloudier the water, the
greater the turbidity" (Murphy 2002). Turbidity is commonly measured in
Nephelometric Turbidity Units (NTU). Waters with a turbidity level of > 5 NTU
are not safe for recreational use or human consumption. Levels > 25 NTU
cannot sustain aquatic life. Turbidity in water is caused by suspended matter
such as clay, silt, and organic matter... that interfere with the passage of light,
through the water (Murphy 2002). Any eroded particles carried to the
surface water will increase turbidity (Murphy 2002). Turbidity was measured
weekly using a turbidity tube, a 1-3/4" diameter clear PVC tube marked in cm
from 0 to 120 with a secchi pattern at the bottom of the tube. The tube was
filled with water, and drained off until the secchi pattern appeared. The height
of the water column was recorded along with the corresponding NTU reading.
Dissolved Oxygen
The absence of dissolved oxygen (DO) in water; is a sign of possible pollution
(Murphy 2002). DO concentrations can, drop too low for fish to breathe,
16


leading to fish kills (Murphy 2002). An increase in nutrients from runoff and
erosion following a wildfire can affect the amount of exposure aquatic plants
have to sunlight because the algae that grow because of excess phosphorus
can block the sunlight from reaching aquatic organisms at the bottom of the
river. Blocking the sunlight from reaching aquatic plants decreases the
amount of photosynthesis that can occur, and thus, decreases dissolved
oxygen levels (Murphy 2002). Dissolved oxygen measurements were made
at streamside using a Hanna Instruments 9145, Dissolved Oxygen Meter with
automatic calibration.
Total Dissolved Solids (TPS)
TDS measurements take into account all the dissolved constituents in the
water; therefore, the solubility of the minerals in the area combined with the
amount of precipitation can affect TDS (Lennox et al 1997). TDS
measurements can include carbonate, sulfate, phosphate, nitrate, calcium,
and other ions (Mitchell and Stapp 2000). Changes in TDS concentrations
can be harmful because the density of the water determines the flow of water
into and out of an organism's cells; therefore, if TDS concentrations become
too high or too low, the growth of aquatic life can be limited and death may
occur (Mitchell and Stapp 2000). Fertilizer, such as the Ammonium
Polyphosphate (APP) used in Fire-Trol LCA-r can be dissolved in storm water
and carried to surface water, thus, contributing to an increase in TDS levels
(Murphy 2002). For this study, TDS levels are classified, using a modified
version of the classification, by Lennox et al 1994. TDS levels are classified
as low (<100 mg/L), medium (100 to 500 mg/L), and high (>500 mg/L). Field
measurements of total dissolved solids were made at streamside using a
17


Hanna Instruments 991300, pH, TDS & temperature meter. The meter was
automatically calibrated using the HI 70031P, 1413 pS/cm calibration packets
before each weekly run.
Quality Assurance/Qualitv Control
About 27 percent of all samples analyzed in the laboratory were quality-
control samples, which included field blanks to measure contamination and
bias, duplicate samples and duplicate-spiked samples to measure variability,
and laboratory spiked samples to measure recovery of analytes. A 1.0 mg/L
Phosphate Standard Solution was prepared to test for interference, bad
reagents, and faulty instruments.
Methods of Sampling
Thirty-one samples were collected and analyzed from each of the three
sampling site for a period of nine months following the Schoonover Fire (July
2002 thru March 2003). Data are presented in tables 2, 3, and 4.
Three samples analyzed for phosphorus were removed due to quality
assurance issues. Site 1, sample 26 and site 2, sample 19 were removed
because there was a large difference between duplicates. Site 3, sample 9
was removed because the field blank reading was high.
18


CHAPTER 4
RESULTS
Analyses for total phosphorus concentration of the samples collected are
used to determine the extent of phosphorus migration following the
application of Fire-Trol LCA-r chemical fire retardant to the Schoonover Fire,
and the effect any migration from the retardant may have had on water
quality. Site 3 is representative of all phosphorus migrating from the study
area into the South Platte River including any phosphorus moving from the
retardant, if this hypothesis is correct. Site 3 should show any increases in
phosphorus levels that may be linked to the use of the chemical fire retardant;
when this data is compared with the data collected at site 2. Summary water
quality data collected from each sampling site are listed in table 2-4,
Appendix A.
Total Phosphorus
Overall, total phosphorus concentrations were below the 0.1 mg/L limit set by
the EPA except in two instances (Figure 5). First, sample number 2 collected
on July 19, 2002 is almost twice the limit of 0.1 mg/L when it was analyzed at
0.19 mg/L. This spike does not correspond to a precipitation event (Figure 4),
but may be related to high discharge rates (Figure 6) and dredging activities
done by Denver Water upstream at Cheesman Reservoir, because of
sediment loading in the reservoir following the Hayman fire.
19


Total Phosphorus (mg/L)
Figure 5 Total Phosphorus Concentrations Along the South Platte River for
9 Months following the Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.
Ste 3 (Bimed, Treated) Ste2 (Buned, Uhtreated) Ste 1 (Control)




H timll nnnHnllnHn..llhfltliilll Jl nail
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 2D 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Sarfle f*rrber
JUI toil Sw Oct l Mw I Pk I Jan I Ftbl
Source: Data collected and analyzed by K. Marty, Appendix A
20


Figure 6 Discharge from the South Platte River for 9 Months following the
Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.
Sample Number
Source: United States Geological Survey 2003
21


Second, sample 28, collected on February 12, 2003 (Figure 5) was over four
times the limit, set by the EPA. This spike corresponds to a significant
snowfall event (Figure 4). A return to higher temperatures following this
storm; would promote melting, subsequent runoff, and should account for this
spike. Discharge rates on February 12 were low (Figure 6) so they do not
provide additional information on the cause of this peak. Looking at figure 5,
one can see that the phosphorus concentrations at site 1, site 2, and site 3
does not vary significantly. In fact, most of the concentrations at the control
(site 1) are equal to or greater than the concentrations found at site 2 and/or
site 3. This indicates that the chemical fire retardant did not release enough
phosphorus into the South Platte River, following application to impact
phosphorus concentrations in the surface water significantly over background
levels. Instead, the data shows that the increase in phosphorus is from the
untreated area (no retardant was applied) and therefore is from the bum itself.
Sample number 3 was the only sample that deviated, where phosphorus
concentrations at site 2 (untreated area) and site 3 (treated area) were
greater than those found in the background; however, concentrations were
the same between site 2 and site 3, showing that the phosphorus from the
retardant did not affect phosphorus levels in this area (Figure 5). In this
instance, the untreated area (no retardant applied) had higher concentrations
of phosphorus than did the treated areas.
Turbidity
Turbidity is a good indicator of particle transport (Murphy 2002). Turbidity
measurements are directly related to the amount of suspended organic and
inorganic particulate found in the water column and are normally attributed to
22


soil erosion (Lennox et. al 1997). High concentrations of suspended
sediment will result in high NTU readings in the area. Turbidity readings
(Figure 7) were consistent from one site to the next, with most reading falling
between 1 and 2 NTU, well below levels that would affect aquatic life. Only
sample number 27 deviated with an increase above 9 NTU. This peak does
not correspond to a peak in phosphorus concentrations, but does correspond
with a peak in discharge (Figure 6) and with data collected by Denver Water
at Cheesman reservoir, where the NTU reading was 44 NTU and was a result
of localized landslides in the Hayman Burn Area (Dahm 2003).
Dissolved Oxygen
Overall, dissolved oxygen levels were steady from one site to the next (Figure
8) and they were consistent with the levels expected, as the area moved from
summer (samples 1 6), to fall (samples 7-17), winter (samples 18 29),
and finally to spring (sample 30-31) temperatures. There was only one
significant drop in dissolved oxygen levels during the study. Sample number
9 dropped to 7.3 mg/L, the lowest DO level during the study. It does not
correlate with any changes in the analyzed constituents, but it does follow a
significant drop in discharge rate (Figure 6), which would affect dissolved
oxygen levels. Slower moving water is exposed to sunlight for longer periods
of time, which could increase the temperature of the water, and subsequently
decrease dissolved oxygen levels. The drop in dissolved oxygen is
consistent with readings taken at Cheesman reservoir. Figure 8 shows that
DO levels were consistent among the three sampling sites during the study.
23


Figure 7 Turbidity Along the South Platte River for 9 Months following the
Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.
Sample Number
|___Ayg____i__Sop____|___Oct i Haw i D>c i____________Jon___|____E*____JS
Source: Data collected and analyzed by K. Marty, Appendix A
24


Dissolved Oxygen (mg/L)
Figure 8 Dissolved Oxygen Levels Along the South Platte River for 9
Months following the Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.
1 2
Site 3 (Burned, Treated)
Site 2 (Burned, Untreated)
Site 1 (Control)_________
10
ll
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
9 10 1 1 12 13 14 15 16 1 7 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Sample Number
M I Aim
Oct I Hnv I D*c
M
Source: Data collected and analyzed by K. Marty, Appendix A
25


Total Dissolved Solids
Total dissolved solids (TDS) levels, which measures the amount of dissolved
materials (Murphy 2002), such as phosphorus, in the water were similar
among the three sample sites with the significant exceptions noted below.
Overall, TDS levels were consistently between 196 and 198 mg/L (Figure 9).
Four times during the study, TDS levels exceeded 198 but not enough to
cause any concerns with aquatic mortality. Sample 2 and sample 8
correspond to high discharge rates (Figure 6). Sample 28 corresponds to an
increase in total phosphorus concentrations; this increase in both total
phosphorus and total dissolved solids may indicate that some of the
phosphorus migrating is in dissolved form. Sample 20, collected on
December 10, 2002 does not correlate to an increase in discharge (Figure 6)
or any recorded precipitation (Figure 4). The only plausible cause for the
increased reading is that Denver Water was doing dredging at Cheesman and
that dredging caused the phosphorus that was attached to the sediment to be
dissolved and transported downstream. The only significant changes in TDS
levels were between the control and site 2. This indicates that the TDS
changes were not a result of the Fire-Trol retardant and therefore, shows that
the retardant had no impact on aquatic life in the area.
26


Total Dissolved Solids (mg/L)
Figure 9 Total Dissolved Solids Along the South Platte River for 9 Months
following the Schoonover Fire near Deckers, Colorado.
Sample Number
JUIHualSwl Oct l May I Dsc I Jb I Ml
Source: Data collected and analyzed by K. Marty, Appendix A
27


CHAPTER 5
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Ninety-three water quality samples were collected from the South Platte River
near Deckers, Colorado for over nine months following the Schoonover Fire
(Appendix A).
Based on the data I conclude that the phosphorus contained in the Fire-Trol
LCA-r chemical fire retardant did not migrate into the South Platte during this
study. Had the phosphorus from the retardant migrated into the surface water
there should have been an increase in phosphorus levels at site 3. This was
not seen. However, phosphorus increases were found at site 1 but were
similar to those found at site 2 and site 3 (Figure 5) this suggests the increase
is related to the characteristics of the burned area and not the use of the Fire-
Trol retardant. Nonetheless, the phosphorus increases because of the
treatment of bum were significantly lower than expected. Studies have found
significant changes in water quality with fire, specifically studies by Hauer and
Spencer (1998) show phosphorus increases of up to 50 fold following large
wildfires. Considering the size of the burn within this area (which includes the
Hayman Fire, the largest fire in Colorado history, which burned the area
around the Schoonover Fire) water quality in the area was not heavily
impacted. This either is a result of the lack of precipitation or is related to the
soil type, which may have stopped the phosphorus from migrating.
Therefore, the results from this study begs an additional question: Why does
the ammonium polyphosphate fertilizer used in the Fire-Trol LCA-r retardant
28


not migrate into surface water while this same fertilizer used in agricultural
settings readily migrates?
Further research is needed to determine the reason the phosphorus from the
retardant did not migrate while phosphorus readily moves from other
fertilizers needs to be examined in a controlled environment before the effect
of retardant use on the environment (especially on the quality of water) is
established. First, continued research in the area should be done to
determine if the phosphorus would migrate during normal levels of
precipitation. Second, leaching experiments should be done to see how the
retardant interacts with the different soils found along the Front Range. Areas
more prone to wildfires need to be identified so soil phosphorus
concentrations, mineralogy, and soil pH can be analyzed and mapped.
Experiments can be performed in controlled environments to see the amount
of phosphorus that can be leached from each soil type following application.
Finally, the different types of vegetation needs to be analyzed to see the
amount of phosphorus released from and required by the plant during and
following a fire, to predict the phosphorus load following a wildfire versus the
phosphorus needs of the area. From this information a phosphorus
migration prediction model can be designed for use by the USFS to enable
Incident Commanders to make informed decisions on the effect the retardant
may have on water quality, specific to the area they are working in and not
based on general recommendations made by the manufacturers of the
chemical retardant.
29


Appendix A: Water Quality Data
30


Table 2. Water-quality Data from the South Platte River Site 1 (Control) for Sampling Dates 7/11/02 3/8/03
(Data collected and analyzed by K. Marty. *,sample removed for quality assurance; A, field blank reading is high; B, large difference
Physical parameters Field parameters Phosphorus concentration
Sample Turbidity Oxygen, dissolved Water temperature Phosphorus, total (mg/L
Number (NTU) (mg/L) TDS (Degrees Celsius) as P)
1-01 1.6 8.9 id? 12.6 5753
1-02 1.6 8.7 200 13.1 0.21
1-03 1.4 8.9 197 13.7 0.01
1-04 1.8 8.6 197 14 0.01
1-05 1.8 8.6 197 14.1 0.07
1-06 1.2 8.5 198 14.5 0.05
1-07 1.8 8.1 198 15.3 0.06
1-08 1.8 8.5 201 14 0.07
1-09 1.8 7.4 197 15.5 0.1
1-10 1.4 8.2 197 14.8 0.02
1-11 1.4 8.2 197 14.2 0.02
1-12 18 8.9 197 13.2 0.03
1-13 1.8 8.4 197 11.7 0.03
1-14 1.8 9.6 197 9.4 0.02
1-15 1.4 9.2 197 8.3 0.07
1-16 1.2 9.1 197 6.8 0.04
1-17 1.6 10.3 197 5.1 0.03
1-18 1.8 10.2 198 2.3 0.02
1-19 1.4 10.1 198 1.2 0.01
1-20 1.4 10.1 199 1.9 0.04
1-21 1.2 10.4 197 2.3 0.02
1-22 1.2 10.6 197 2.1 0.05
1-23 1.2 10.8 197 2.6 0.05
1-24 1.4 10.9 197 2.4 0.02
1-25 1.6 10.7 197 2.8 0.04
1-26 1.6 10 197 2.2 IB 0.09I
1-27 1.2 10.1 197 2.7 0.05
1-28 9.1 10.2 199 2.8 0.49
1-29 1.6 ' .10.2 197 2.6 0.02
1-30 1.6 10 197 2.8 0.02
1-31 1.6 10.4 197 3.1 0.05


Table 3. Water-quality Data from the South Platte River Site 2 for Sampling Dates 7/11/02 3/8/03
[Data collected and analyzed by K. Marty. *,sample removed for quality assurance; A, field blank reading is high; B, large difference
between duplicates]
Sample Number Physical parameters Field parameters Phosphorus concentration
Turbidity (NTU) Oxygen, dissolved (mg/L) TDS Water temperature ( Degrees Celsius) Phosphorus, total (mg/L as P)
2-01 1.6 8.8 197 12.9 0.02
2-02 1.8 8.7 200 13.1 0.19
2-03 1.4 8.9 196 13.7 0.03
2-04 1.8 6.6 197 14 0.01
2-05 1.8 8.5 197 14.1 0.06
2-06 1.2 8.5 197 14.5 0.04
2-07 1.6 8.2 197 15.3 0.05
2-08 1.8 8.5 201 14 0.07
2-09 1.8 7.3 197 15.5 0.09
2-10 1.4 8.1 197 14.8 0.02
2-11 1.4 8.2 197 14.2 0.02
2-12 1.8 8.9 197 13.2 0.03
2-13 1.8 8.5 197 11.7 0.02
2-14 1.8 9.6 197 9.4 0.02
2-15 1.4 9.2 197 8.3 0.06
2-16 1.2 9.1 197 6.8 0.04
2-17 1.6 10.3 197 5.1 0.02
2-18 1.6 10.3 197 2.3 0.02
2-19 1.6 10.1 197 1.2 IB <0.011
2-20 1.4 10.3 199 1.9 0.03
2-21 1.2 10.4 197 2 5 0.02
2-22 1.2 10.6 197 2.3 0.04
2-23 1.2 10.8 197 2.6 0.05
2-24 1.6 10.9 197 2.5 0.02
2-25 1.4 ' ' 10.7 197 '2.8 0.03
2-26 1.4 10 197 "2.1 0.04
2-27 1.2 10.1 197 2.6 0.04
2-28 9.1 10.2 199 2.5 0.44
2-29 1.6 10.2 197 2 6 0.02
2-30 1.4 10.1 197 2.5 0.02
2-31 1.4 10.5 197 2.5 0.03


Table 4. Water-quality Data from the South Platte River Site 3 for Sampling Dates 7/11/02 3/8/03
[Data collected and analyzed by K. Marty. *,sample removed for quality assurance; A, field blank reading is high; B, large difference
between duplicates]
Sample Number Physical parameters Field parameters Phosphorus concentration
Turbidity (NTU) Oxygen, dissolved (mg/L) TDS Water temperature (Degrees Celsius) Phosphorus, total (mg/L as P)
3-01 1.6 8.8 197 12.9 0.02
3-02 1.8 8.7 200 13.1 0.19
3-03 1.4 8.9 196 13.7 0.03
3-04 1.8 8.6 197 14 0.01
3-05 1.8 8.5 197 14.1 0.06
3-06 1.2 8.5 197 14.5 0.04
3-07 1.6 8.2 197 15.3 0.05
3-08 1.8 8.5 201 14 0.07
3-09 1.8 7.3 197 15.5 IA 0.011
3-10 1.4 8.1 197 14.8 0.02
3-11 1.4 8 2 197 14.2 0.02
3-12 1.8 8.9 197 13.2 0.03
3-13 1.8 8.5 197 11.7 0.03
3-14 1.8 9.6 197 9.4 0.02
3-15 1.4 9.2 197 8.3 0.06
3-16 1.2 9.1 197 6.8 0.04
3-17 1.6 10.3 197 5.1 0.03
3-18 1.6 10.3 197 2.3 0.02
3-19 1.6 10.1 197 1.2 0.01
3-20 1.4 10.3 199 1.9 0.03
3-21 1.2 10.4 197 2.4 0.03
3-22 1.2 10.6 197 2.2 0.04
3-23 1.2 10.8 197 2.4 0.05
3-24 1.6 10.9 197 2.3 0.02
3-25 1.4 - 10.7 197 , 2£ 0.03
3-26 i.4_ 10 197 . 2.2 0.04
3-27 1.2 10.1 197 2.7 0.05
3-28 9.1 10.2 199 2.6 0.44
3-29 1.6 10.2 197 2.8 0.02
3-30 1.4 10.1 197 3.2 0.02
3-31 1.4 10.5 197 3.1 0.03


Appendix B: Precipitation Data
34


Table 5. Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March 2003.
Dale 24 Hour P re c ip ia la tio n Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 24 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P re c ip ita tio n
7/1/0 2 0 0 0
7/2/0 2 0 0 0
7/3/0 2 0 0 0
7/4/0 2 0.0 5 0 0.0 5
7/5/0 2 0.2 4 0 0.2 4
7/6/0 2 0.2 5 0 0.2 5
7/7/0 2 0.0 5 0 0.0 5
7/8/0 2 0 0 0
7/9/0 2 0 0 0
7/10/02 0.2 1 0 0.2 1
7/1 1/0 2 0 0 0
7/1 2/0 2 0 0 0
7/1 3/0 2 0 0 0
7/1 4/0 2 0 0 0
7/15/02 0 0 0
7/16/02 0 0 0
7/1 7/0 2 0 0 0
7/1 8/0 2 0 0 0
7/1 9/0 2 0 0 0
7/20/02 0 0 0
7/21/02 0 0 0
7/22/02 0.5 7 0 0.5 7
7/23/02 0 0 0
7/24/02 0 0 0
7/25/02 0 0 0
7/26/02 0 0 0
7/27/02 0 0 0
7/28/02 0 0 0
7/29/02 0 0 0
7/30/02 0 0 0
7/31/02 0 0 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
Date 24 Hour Precipiatalion Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 24 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (Inches) Total P re c ip ita tio n
8/1/0 2 0 0 0
8/2/0 2 0 0 0
8/3/0 2 0 0 0
8/4/0 2 0.2 8 0 0.2 8
8/5/0 2 0 0 0
8/6/0 2 0.2 4 0 0.2 4
8/7/0 2 0.0 3 0 0.0 3
8/8/0 2 0.0 2 0 0.0 2
8/9/0 2 0 0 0
8/1 0/0 2 0 0 0
8/1 1/0 2 0 0 0
8/12/02 0 0 0
8/13/02 0 0 0
8/1 4/0 2 0 0 0
8/1 5/0 2 0 0 0
8/1 6/0 2 0 0 0
8/17/0 2 0 0 0
8/1 8/0 2 0 0 0
8/19/0 2 0 0 0
8/2 0/0 2 0 0 0
8/21/02 0 0 0
8/22/02 0.2 5 0 0.2 5
8/23/02 0 0 0
8/24/02 0 0 0
8/25/02 0 - 0 - 0
8/26/02 0 - 0 - 0
8/27/02 0 0 0
8/28/02 0.0 2 0 0.0 2
8/29/02 0 0 0
8/30/02 0 0 0
8/31/02 0 0 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
Date 24 Hour Precipiatation Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 24 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P re c ip ita tio n
9/1 / 0 2 0 0 0
9/2/0 2 0 0 0
9/3/0 2 0 0 0
9/4/0 2 0 0 0
9/5/0 2 0 0 0
9/6/0 2 0 0 0
9/7/0 2 0 0 0
9/8/0 2 0 0 0
9/9/0 2 0.12 0 0.12
9/1 0/0 2 0.6 4 0 0.6 4
9/1 1/0 2 0.0 4 0 0.0 4
9/1 2/0 2 0 0 0
9/1 3/0 2 0.4 8 0 0.4 8
9/1 4/0 2 0.12 0 0.12
9/1 5/0 2 0 0 0
9/1 6/0 2 0 0 0
9/1 7/0 2 0 0 0
9/1 8/0 2 0 0 0
9/1 9/0 2 0.15 0 0.15
9/20/02 0 0 0
9/21/02 0 0 0
9/22/02 0 0 0
9/23/02 0 0 0
9/24/02 0 0 0
9/25/02 0 0 0
9/26/02 0.07 0 0.0 7
9/27/02 0.2 4 o 0.2 4
9/28/02 0 0 0
9/29/02 0 .1 0 0 .1
9/30/02 0 0 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
U>
oo
Date 24 Hour Precipiatation Am ounts rain, m elted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 24 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P re c ip ita tio n
10/1/02 0 0 0
10/2/02 0.6 3 0 0.6 3
10/3/02 0.0 5 0 0.0 5
10/4/02 0 0 0
1 0/5/0 2 0 0 0
10/6/02 0 0 0
10/7/02 0 0 0
10/8/02 0 0 0
10/9/02 0 0 0
1 0/1 0/0 2 0 0 0
10/11/02 0 0 0
1 0/1 2/0 2 0 0 0
10/13/02 0 0 0
1 0/1 4/0 2 0 0 0
1 0/1 5/0 2 0 0 0
1 0/1 6/0 2 0 0 0
1 0/1 7/0 2 0 0 0
1 0/1 8/0 2 0 0 0
1 0/1 9/0 2 0 0 0
10/20/02 0 0 0
10/21/02 0 0 0
10/22/02 0 0 0
10/23/02 0.0 2 0 0.0 2
10/24/02 0.16 1 1.16
10/25/02 0 0 0
10/26/02 0 0 0
10/27/02 0.25 0 0.2 5
10/28/02 0.0 2 0 0.02
1 0/29/02 0.12 1 1 .1 2
10/30/02 0.11 1 1.11
10/31/02 0.0 7 2 2.0 7
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


.Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
Date 24 Hour P re c ip ia ta tio n Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 2 4 Hour P re c ip ita tio n Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P re c ip ita tio n
11/1/02 0 0 0
1 1/2/0 2 0 0 0
1 1/3/0 2 0.0 5 1 1.0 5
1 1/4/0 2 0 0 0
1 1/5/0 2 0 0 0
1 1/6/0 2 0 0 0
1 1/7/0 2 0 0 0
1 1/8/0 2 0 0 0
1 1/9/0 2 0.0 2 0 0.0 2
1 1/10/02 0 0 0
1 1/1 1/0 2 0 0 0
11/12/02 0 0 0
11/13/02 0 0 0
11/14/02 0 0 0
11/15/02 0 0 0
11/16/02 0.0 5 1 1 .0 5
11/17/02 0 0 0
11/18/02 0 0 0
11/19/02 0 0 0
1 1/20/02 0 0 0
11/21/02 0 0 0
1 1/22/02 0 0 0
1 1/23/02 0 0 0
1 1/24/02 0 0 0
1 1/25/02 0.0 4 0 0.0 4
1 1/26/02 0 0 0
1 1/27/02 0 0 0
1 1/28/02 0 0 0
1 1/29/02 0 0 0
1 1/30/02 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
Date 24 Hour Precipiatation Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 24 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P r e c ip ita tio n
12/1/02 0 0 0
12/2/02 0 0 0
12/3/02 0 0 0
12/4/02 0 0 0
12/5/02 0 0 0
12/6/02 0 0 0
12/7/02 0 0 0
1 2/8/0 2 0 0 0
1 2/9/0 2 0 0 0
1 2/1 0/0 2 0 0 0
12/11/02 0 0 0
1 2/1 2/0 2 0 0 0
12/13/02 0 0 0
12/14/02 0 0 0
1 2/1 5/0 2 0 0 0
1 2/1 6/0 2 0 0 0
1 2/1 7/0 2 0 0 0
1 2/1 0/0 2 0 0 0
1 2/1 9/0 2 0.0 2 0 .5 0.5 2
12/20/02 0 0 0
12/21/02 0 0 0
12/22/02 0 0 0
1 2/23/02 0 0 0
1 2/24/02 0 0 0
12/25/02 0 0 0
12/26/02 0 0 0
12/27/02 0 0 0
12/28/02 0 0 0
12/29/02 0 0 0
12/30/02 0 0 0
12/31/02 0 0 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
Date 24 Hour P re c ip ia ta tio n Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 2 4 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P re c ip ita tio n
1/1/0 3 0.0 5 1 1.0 5
1/2/0 3 0 0 0
1/3/0 3 0 0 0
1/4/0 3 0 0 0
1/5/0 3 0 0 0
1/6/0 3 0.15 1 1.15
1/7/0 3 0 0 0
1/8/0 3 0 0 0
1/9/0 3 0 0 0
1/10/03 0 0 0
1/1 1/0 3 0 0 0
1/12/03 0 0 0
1/13/03 0 0 0
1/14/03 0 0 0
1/1 5/0 3 0 0 0
1/16/03 0 0 0
1/17/03 0 0 0
1/18/03 0 0 0
1/19/03 0 0 0
1/20/03 0 0 0
1/21/03 0 0 0
1/22/03 0 0 0
1/23/03 0 0 0
1/24/03 0 0 0
1/25/03 0 0 0
1/26/03 0 0 0
1/27/03 0 0 0
1/28/03 0 0 0
1/29/03 0 0 0
1/30/03 0 0 0
1/31/03 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
Date 24 Hour P re c ip ia ta tio n Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 24 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P re c ip ita tio n
2/1/03 0 0 0
2/2/0 3 0 0 0
2/3/0 3 0.3 2 0.3 2
2/4/0 3 0 0
2/5/03 0.1 0 0.1
2/6/03 0.16 2 2.16
2/7/03 0 2 2
2/8/0 3 0 0 0
2/9/03 0 0 0
2/1 0/03 0 0 0
2/11/0 3 0 0 0
2/1 2/03 0 0 0
2/13/03 0 0 0
2/14/03 0 0 0
2/1 5/03 0.1 0 0.1
2/16/03 0.1 1 1 .1
2/17/03 0 0 0
2/18/03 0 0 0
2/1 9/03 0 0 0
2/20/03 0 0 0
2/21/03 0 0 0
2/22/03 0 0 0
2/23/03 0
2/24/03 0 0 0
2/25/03 0 0 0
2/26/03 0 0 0
2/27/03 0.12 1 1.12
2/28/03 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Table 5 (Cont.) Precipitation Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March
2003.
D ate 24 Hour P rec ip ia ta tio n Amounts rain, melted snow (Inches & Hundredths) 24 Hour Precipitation Amounts, Ice on ground (inches) Total P re c ip itatio n
3/1 /0 2 0.15 2 2.15
3/2/02 0.2 3 3.2
3/3/0 2 0 0 0
3/4/0 2 0 0 0
3/5/02 0 0 0
3/6/0 2 0 0 0
3/7/0 2 0 0 0
3/8/02 0 0 0
Source: National Climatic Data Center 2003


Appendix C: Discharge Data
44


Table 6 Discharge Data from the South Platte River near Deckers, Colorado from July thru March 2003.
DATE Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar
2002 2002 2002 2002 2002 2002 2003 2003 2003
1 ... 353 337HUl 405 171 ... 121 1 05 ...
2 ... 357 467"a 387 171 ... 130 109 ...
3 ... 357 472 366 109 ... 119 107 ...
4 ... 313 472 279nal 68 105 119 160 ...
5 --- 309 477 1 87"al 66 107 121 107 ...
6 ... 321 482"' 1 87nJ1 66 105 121 109 ...
7 ... 438 487 1 84hal 163 105 121 179 iTT
8 ... 329 487 184 166 103 123 176 iTT-
9 ... 252 433 182 134 127 121 182 113"al
10 ... 255 383 219 134 127 155 252 113
11 ... 255 305 219 134 127 119 107 113
12 ... 258 462 226 83 123 119 141 115
13 ... 258 222nui 219 ... 123 121 113 117
14 ... 276 141 "al 219 ... 125 121 113 117
15 ... 333 141 "al 166 ... 127 119 111 92
16 ... 433 242 171 87 127 132 113 92
17 ... 438 345 216 87 125 107 113 101
18 ... 433 349"* 213 85 125 193 111 107
19 361 433 345"a 213 85 123 146 115 105
20 361 438 345 213 87 222 94 - 101
21 815 535 173 216 85 97 95 74
22 379 43B 123 216 85 1 96 94 --- 75
23 317 269 1 25nal 219 85 148 95 --- 83
24 146 272 ... 213 87 151 97 ... 117
25 309 276 242 210 87 151 92 --- 125
26 313 357 283 182 ... 265 87 ... 130
27 313 524 245"al 182 ... 148 55 ... 132
28 313 524 245 171 ... 1 1 9 57 --- 119
29 317 519"' 245 173 ... 119 78 94
30 317 41 4nal 383ndl 173 ... 119 57 95
31 353 41 4"al - 176 121, . 101 ...
Source: United States Geological Survey 2003


REFERENCES
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment- Water Quality
Control Division. The Basic Standards and Methodologies for Surface
Water, [cited 12 January 2002]; available from
http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/cdphereg.asp#wqreg.
Dahm, Bruce. Telephone conversation with author. Chemist, Denver Water.
2 February 2002.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Terms of Environment, [cited 28
February 2002]; available from www.epa.gov/OCEPAterms.
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