Frequently asked questions

What is a system?

A system represents the geographic reporting setup to allow post-processing of results for different spatial summaries. A System has a five level hierarchy:




4.Sites (typically a reach)

5. Flow data (discharge and eflow release data)

The system is the basic unit in eFlow Projector and is used to define the geographic system against which scenarios are run. When you sign up to eFlow Projector you sign up for a System.

User access and data management is handled as a System. A System represents a geographic system with nested regions, catchments, sub-catchments and sites and flow data.  A system can have unlimited scenarios which are collections of flow rules that run on the system. All users in a group have access to all scenarios, system setup and results for the group.

Why is eFlow Projector managed on a ‘System’ basis?

A system in eFflow Projector is typically assigned to a single organisation which cares about water management in a specific system (region, catchment) and has a known group of users who manage environmental water planning and assessment.

What can System administrators do?

System administrators can invite users to the System and remove users from the System. System administrators cannot remove themselves.

What are the different user permissions?

There are two levels of user access;

1.Admin – full access to the tool and can invite and remove users

2.Can use only – full access to the tool but cannot invite or remove users

How many members can a System have?

There is no limit on the number of users in a group.

How many scenarios can a System have?

There is no limit on the number of scenarios in a System.

What is a region?

A region is the highest level description of a System. This used to allow aggregated reporting. Example systems might be Northern Victoria, Gippsland, Barwon. You can have one or as many Regions as you like.

What is a Catchment?

Catchments are the next level of spatial reporting below a region. Catchments can have reporting Sites (reaches), or if required they can have Sub-catchments which in turn have reporting sites. The spatial hierarchy is Region, Catchment, Sub-catchment, Site. Or Region, Catchment, Site if there are no sub-catchments.

Spatial hierarchy

The spatial hierarchy is simply used to tag the results for easy post processing of flow rules which are run at a Site level. The hierarchy is Region, Catchment, Sub-catchment (optional), Site.

What is a site?

A site is the location at which the flow rules are assessed. This is typically a reporting location associated with a reach.

What is site flow data?

The flow data for a site is daily time series flow data uploaded in CSV form with the first column dd/mm/yyyy and the second column as discharge in ML/d. The data MUST be gap free. EFlow Projector does not infill missing flow data.

How do I update the flow data?

Selecting the ‘choose file’ for the flow will allow the uploading of new flow data, on upload you have the option of appending the new data to the existing data or entirely replacing the existing data with the new data.

Why would I append flow data?

Cleaning flow data can be time consuming. The ‘append’ option allows you to add new data (before or after the existing record) without overwriting he existing data. Alternatively you can delete the entire flow record and add a new one, or overwrite the existing data with any new records in the upload.

What is ewater data?

Ewater data is daily time series data (same format as flow data) that represents the water delivered to the reporting site that has specifically been released for environmental purposes.

What is the ewater data used for?

The ewater data is used to report how much ewater contributed to the flow rule magnitude achievement.

What is the ewater lag ?

Ewater is often released from a dam which is upstream from the reporting site. The lag value is applied to the ewater date values to get it to line up with flow at the reporting site.

What is prevailing climate?

Environmental watering requirements vary depending on the prevailing climatic conditions. During wet years flow requirements will typically be higher (larger magnitude or more flow events) to stimulate reproduction and growth. During drought years, environmental watering conditions are often lower, with a focus on maintenance and survival.

How does prevailing climate work in eFlow Projector ?

EFlow Projecor has five alternative prevailing climate categories (Wet, Average, Dry, Very dry, Drought). Each flow rule is actually five flow rules (one for each prevailing climate). Different parameters can be set for each of the prevailing climate conditions for the flow rule.

How does eFlow Projector know what the prevailing climate is?

You need to tell eFlow Predictor what the prevailing climate is. The prevailing climate can be set as a default value across all elements of the reporting system or they can be set differently for each system (catchment).

Can the prevailing climate change through the reporting year?

Yes. It is not uncommon to commence the year dry, and then receive some welcome rainfall which fills the reservoirs. EFlow Projector adjusts the flow rule requirements by a pro-rata approach.

What is a scenario?

A scenario is a collection of flow rules to conduct an assessment against. Results are produced at a scenario level.

What are global settings?

Global settings allow you to set the same partial success and prevailing climate for all systems in the scenario.

What is a flow rule?

A flow rule is a specification of one of the environmental flow requirements at a site. There are five types of flow rules (freshes, low flow, oversupply, multiyear freshes, custom). A flow rule has a season (what time of the year should the flow rule be considered). A flow rule has a set of values describing the water requirement for each of five prevailing climatic conditions.

Freshes flow rule

Freshes flow rules are for medium to high flow events. A freshes flow rule has four parameters per prevailing climate; Magnitude, duration, number and independence. The freshes flow rule can have a return period over which the rule is assessed. That is the flow rule is assessed on an annual basis and the best performing year over the return period interval is reported.

Low flow flow rule

A low flow rule has two parameters per prevailing climate; Magnitude and duration.

Oversupply flow rule

An oversupply flow rule has two parameters per prevailing climate; Magnitude and duration.

Multiyear freshes flow rule

Multiyear freshes flow rules are for high flow events. A multiyear freshes flow rule has five parameters per prevailing climate; Magnitude, duration, number, independence and maximum interval.  The multiyear freshes assess the flow rule over the entire return period (not on an annual basis) and also considers the maximum interval between flow events. This flow rule is typically used for bank full events such as floodplain vegetation needs to be inundated 3 times in 10 years with a maximum interval (dry) of 5 years.

Custom flow rule

Custom flow rules are used for capturing a place in the output reporting for sites such as wetlands that have an environmental watering need, but no specific quantitative flow requirement. No computation is performed on custom flow rules.

What is partial success?

The full environmental watering objective may not be achieved. However this does not mean that there is zero environmental benefit from the flow delivered. Partial success allows you to specify at an individual flow rule level the relative importance of magnitude, duration, count and independence for the specific environmental purpose of the flow objective.

How is the overall score calculated?

The overall score for a flow rule for a reporting year is achieved by multiplying the sub-scores (magnitude x Duration x count x independence).

How is the magnitude score calculated?

For each day of an event the magnitude score is based on the partial success table. For each event the average of these daily magnitude scores gives the event magnitude score. For multiple events, the annual magnitude score is the average of the event magnitude scores.

How is the duration score calculated?

An event duration score is calculated for each event (based on the partial success tables). The annual duration score is the average of event duration scores.

How is the count score calculated?

Across a reporting year the count score is determined based on the number of events compared to the target event and the partial success table.

How is the independence score calculated?

When the number of events considered is greater then 1, the independence between the events is considered. The number of independence periods is number of events -1. An event-gap independence score is determined based on the  based on the partial success tables. The annual independence score is the average of event-gap independence scores.