Data Integration & Analysis

WaterMAPS™ integrates water meter data, with property records, weather data, and landscape classifications into one database (Figure 1). Water managers are given options that allow them to make various assumptions (e.g., to account for irrigation system inefficiencies, to include parking strips outside property boundaries) and use different time frames (e.g., a billing period, an irrigation season) in calculating site-specific Landscape Irrigation Ratios (LIRs). 


LIRs identify “capacity to conserve” water applied to urban parcels of land. The ratios are produced through dividing the amount of water actually used on a particular landscape by the estimated amount of water that landscape needs to be healthy and through standardizing the calculations per unit of landscaped area. Landscape water use is estimated from analysis of municipal or water provider meter or billing data that subtracts indoor water use. Landscape water need is estimated from the classification of remotely-sensed airborne multispectral imagery and localized reference evapotranspiration (ETo) rates modified to account for the varying water needs of the different types of landscape plant material at each location. LIRs can be categorized and labeled (e.g., as efficient, acceptable, inefficient, or excessive) to provide an indication of the appropriateness of landscape water use to meet landscape water need (Figure 2). 


WaterMAPS™ enables the spatial display of results and facilitates additional analyses for an entire service area.