A pre-impoundment study of the North Anna River, Virginia

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Water Resources Research Center, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

As our population continues to grow, it is evident that there is an increasing demand for more convenience. More convenience implies, in part, a greater demand for electrical energy. As the electrical industry expands to provide a more leisurely life, water power will, by necessity, have to be utilized in one way or another. The harnessing of a potentially available water resource usually results in the damming of a river and subsequent creation of a reservoir. A pre-impoundment study, if considered before plans are finalized, will enable all concerned to view the natural resource before it is modified or changed. The natural resource, in this case a river, can .then be evaluated for its potential as a recreational resource, industrial resource (coolant, raw water supply, diluant, etc.), public water supply, or agricultural resource (irrigation, water source for livestock, digestion and dilution of feedlot runoff, etc.). In the past, little effort has been made to study the total resource potential of a river and then evaluate what is to be gained when a reservoir is created.