Graduation Year

2009

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.S.

Degree Granting Department

Geography

Major Professor

Kamal Alsharif, Ph.D.

Keywords

Benchmark, Efficiency frontier, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Lake, Land use

Abstract

The purpose of this thesis is to describe the relationship between surface water quality and land use. Water management recommendations will be divulged based upon the interaction of lake water quality and land use. The methodology developed for this research applied Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA), a performance measurement tool, to evaluate lake water quality in relation to surrounding land use. Lake performance ratings were generated by DEA software that assessed multiple variables describing surface water nutrient loads and surrounding land use. Results from this analysis revealed a significant trend between lake water quality and land use within the study area. Lakes located within a two mile radius of more naturally preserved land area typically attained higher performance ratings than lakes located within a two mile radius of less naturally preserved land area. The spatial quantity of naturally preserved land influenced lake nutrient concentrations. Also, lake performance ratings generally declined in two mile radius delineations that contained less naturally preserved land area indicating a direct relationship between natural land area and lake performance.

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