M&A staff updated and recalibrated the current Kings Basin groundwater model in Fresno, Tulare, and Kings Counties.

Kings River Conservation District

Location: Fresno, California
The model was a successful improvement over previous models and has been used to estimate groundwater impacts from future water management plans.


The Kings Basin groundwater model required updating and some recalibration to provide a reliable and accurate tool for groundwater management. The techniques the team developed for calibrating the Irrigation Demand Calculator (IDC) portion of the Integrated Water Flow Model (IWFM) were the key to the project’s success.


Hydrometrics WRI (now M&A) updated the model by moving it to the State of California’s most recent version of IWFM. Services included:

  • Migrating the model from an older model code to the most recent model code developed by the State of California
  • Calibrating the IDC independently of the IWFM for 13 soil types and nine crop types
  • Verifying the calibration against data provided by local growers, who confidentially provided estimates of water use for various crops on various soils
  • Calibrating stream/aquifer interactions to more realistically reflect data in the western half of the basin
  • Re-calibrating the western half of the groundwater model to more accurately reflect geological data, and address growers concerns about errors in the original model