WEBINAR SERIES: Forecast-Informed Reservoir Operation

PART 2: Science Aspects of a FIRO Program

ORIGINALLY AIRED NOVEMBER 18, 2020 | 1:00 - 2:00 PM ET / 10:00 - 11:00 AM PT



The Forecast Informed Reservoir Operations (FIRO) program is founded in science. A successful program requires a thorough observation network that includes on-the-ground gauging, event based atmospheric monitoring and remote sensing. These observations provide an accurate picture of current conditions to provide validation data for forecast models and to enable physical process studies that lead to improved parameterizations and more accurate forecasts from the numerical models that predict atmospheric conditions and hydrology. A decision support system must leverage the skill and uncertainty of the forecasts to make management decisions that meet multiple objectives. Coordination of these components requires a multi-disciplinary team of atmospheric scientists, hydrologists and engineers. This webinar provides an overview of the science of the FIRO program from observations to decision support.

Learning Objectives

  1. Identify the essential components of a FIRO project in a reservoir.
  2. Recognize the different forecast requirements for FIRO reservoirs with different characteristics.
  3. Identify the role of observational campaigns in FIRO projects.


Anna Wilson
Field Research Manager
CW3E/ Scripps/ UCSD

Dr. Anna Wilson is the Field Research Manager with the Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She has been with the Center since earning her PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Duke University in 2016. Her work involves the integration of observations and modeling to research atmospheric rivers and extreme precipitation events in the west, particularly for water resource management applications such as FIRO. Her responsibilities include overseeing ground-based field programs in California and coordinating airborne field campaigns over the northeast Pacific.

Forest Cannon
Atmospheric Scientist
CW3E/ Scripps/ UCSD

Dr. Forest Cannon is an atmospheric scientist in the Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. His research focuses on reducing uncertainty in forecasts of atmospheric rivers and precipitation in the Western United States. Forest's work leverages field campaign and remotely sensed observations alongside numerical weather prediction to understand current forecast system limitations and potential areas of improvement.

Chris Delaney
Sonoma Water
Senior Engineer

Chris Delaney has been a water resources engineer at Sonoma Water for over 15 years, where he specializes in water resources planning and numerical modeling. Over the years Chris has provided support to numerous high-profile projects throughout Sonoma County including the modeling of complex hydrologic and hydraulic systems, evaluation of impacts for sensitive fish species, and the development flood control and water supply decision support systems. Most recently Chris has teamed up with Scripps Institute of Oceanography to provide technical support on the simulation of Forecast Informed Reservoir Operations for reservoirs in California.

Webinar Recording & PDH Certificate

Included with your webinar registration is access to a recording of the webinar and a fillable certificate to self-report your Professional Development Hour (PDH) credit. The recording, your certificate, and any available slides will be emailed to you in the days following the webinar. Access to the webinar recording will be available on AWRA’s Webinar Center and in the email you will receive from [email protected].


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