Forecast Informed Reservoir Operations

California’s Russian River on a sunny day

Project Brief

Since 2014, ERG has been providing strategic planning, organizational, and facilitation support to the Forecast Informed Reservoir Operations steering committee: an inter-agency group of representatives from the Sonoma County Water Agency, California Department of Water Resources, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and federal agencies. An innovative approach to optimizing reservoir storage, FIRO uses modern forecasting to improve water supply reliability.

ERG has supported the committee in its work to develop, test, and implement improved forecasting in the Russian River watershed in northern California. For example, we have helped the committee develop work plans, outreach strategies, FIRO viability assessments, and communication products. We have also supported the committee’s documented process for introducing FIRO in other watersheds, and its development of recommendations to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for updating the Lake Mendocino Water Control Manual to better balance fisheries, water supply, and flood control needs in the watershed.


Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Sonoma County Water Agency, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers