Stream Identification and Assessment

Stream identification is rarely as simple as looking for the blue lines on a map. Practices to identify and assess streams vary throughout the United States. A lot can change between different State and Federal agency jurisdictions. In order to do these types of assessments, it is necessary to have knowledge of specific methods for determination of jurisdiction and flow regime.

An identified ephemeral stream in Harlan Co., KY

Flow regimes can include perennial, intermittent and ephemeral flow. Depending on the location, season and recent weather, these regimes can be difficult to differentiate and the streams themselves may be hard to recognize. For example, this stream in Harlan Co., KY only carries flow in response to rainfall. Differing agencies on the State and Federal levels may treat an aquatic resource such as this in different ways.

Another factor is policy change. Legal jurisdiction over aquatic features can vary based on the current policies.

BSC is dedicated to being up to date with the current policies of State and Federal agencies in order to make accurate and efficient determinations. The staff has practiced a variety of different assessments to determine the flow regimes and functionality of aquatic resources throughout multiple states. BSC works hard to ensure that various permitting processes are accomplished successfully.