Solution specific articles for Water & Environmental Resources.

Lynker Work Cited in Capitol Hill Testimony

How will climate change impact winter sports in future years? The Washington Post recently used a 2017 study by Lynker’s Cameron Wobus and other researchers from the University of Colorado, Boulder to answer this exact question. Read the article below, and learn more about the environmental, recreational, and monetary impact of reduced winter season lengths in Cameron’s study “Projected climate change impacts on skiing and snowmobiling: A case study of the United States.”

 

Could global warming spell the demise of winter sports? These athletes told Congress that’s their fear.

Top 4 Reasons Millennials Love Working at Lynker

Lynker offers a lot of great things to our employees like paid training and upward mobility, but a recent article by Comparably dug into what matters to the Millennial generation. Here are the top 4 reasons why Lynker is a great company for Millennials.

#1 Social Impact

It’s no secret here that Lynker’s work is focused on protecting our natural resources. When you get to work for a company that identifies protected species on fishing vessels, studies humpback whales, and saves sea birds the social impact is pretty clear.

#2 Flexibility

Our work takes us everywhere! Whether you’re in the Lynker bunkhouse in Hawaii, our hydrology location in Colorado, IT central near DC, or out on the ocean the definition of “office” remains flexible. Supported by Lynker Corporate staff, each and every employee has access to quality consistent support services from Human Resources and Payroll to Tech Support and Training.

#3 Benefits That Match Their Values

There are already so many deductions before you receive your paycheck. At Lynker, we make it one less by providing full-time employees with comprehensive healthcare for FREE. Free? Yes, free! Lynker pays all full-time employee healthcare premiums which includes vision and dental.

#4 Feeling like a valued contributor rather than a number at work.

We want to be the company that customers want to work with, and the one employees want to work for. We do this by rewarding enthusiastic passionate employees. Our employees are encouraged to take initiative to improve processes, share ideas, and actively contribute to their team. Employees receive recognition and praise for their contributions in many forms such as project-wide kudos emails, team lunches, and spot bonuses.

Lynker Visualizes Colorado’s Drought Plan: A Story Map

Lynker, as part of a project for the Colorado Water Conservation Board, a division of the state’s Department of Natural Resources, has launched an interactive dashboard that displays drought vulnerability at the state and county level based on Colorado’s 2018 Drought Plan. To more easily visualize drought vulnerability throughout the state, Lynker created an Esri Story Map. The platform takes users through visual summaries of Colorado drought risk by sectors, using images and graphs to provide an interactive and engaging experience.

The complete interactive Story Map can be viewed here.

The opening screen of the Story Map provides an overview of County Drought Risk Scores across Colorado as well as a snapshot of drought vulnerability risk by sector. Similar to the 2018 updated Plan, the Story Map also drills down into content specific to different sectors: agriculture, recreation, socioeconomic, environment, energy, and state assets. State assets include state buildings and critical infrastructure (dams), land board revenue, state-based recreation and park visitation, aquatic species and habitat (fisheries), and protected state-owned areas.

Further information on Colorado’s 2018 Drought Plan is available at drought.gov.

Lynker Presents Independent Study of Pebble Mine Dam Failure

On Friday, March 1st, Dr. Cameron Wobus presented findings to the Commercial Fisherman for Bristol Bay from a Pebble Mine Tailings Dam Failure analysis that was conducted by Lynker. The study was developed after report scoping documents indicated there was likely to be inadequate tailings dam failure scenarios considered in the Army Corps of Engineers Draft Environmental Impact Statement. In all scenarios analyzed by Lynker, a tailings dam failure would directly impact hundreds of miles of anadromous waters.

Hydrologist Dr. Cameron Wobus is a broadly trained earth scientist with approximately 15 years of experience in geomorphology, hydrology, and environmental data analysis and modeling.

 

Dr. Wobus’ complete presentation can be found here. The Commercial Fisherman for Bristol Bay have also posted a recording of the presentation.

Colorado Drought Plan Update

In alignment with the State of Colorado’s commitment to address changing climate conditions, Lynker was contracted by the State to assist in updating Colorado’s Drought Mitigation and Response Plan. Project deliverables included the production of a fully updated mitigation and response plan in compliance with Federal Emergency Management Agency requirements for enhanced state hazard mitigation plans and the Emergency Management Accreditation Program standards. In addition, Lynker provided an updated drought vulnerability assessment which provides the necessary basis for an updated and comprehensive mitigation strategy. The plan is an element of meeting FEMA enhanced state plan requirements and will guide the State in determining risk and vulnerability of assets and how to mitigate impacts.  Critical to the update of the plan was an analysis of events since 2013, actions taken during those events, and incorporating the latest science and a review of monitoring and mitigation activities to improve integration of the relationship between climate change and drought in Colorado.

Salt Basin Groundwater System Appropriation—New Mexico

Lynker’s scientist, under contract with the NM State Engineer’s office developed a MODFLOW numerical groundwater model and a NETPATH geochemical model to characterize the Salt Basin aquifer in southern NM. Environmental tracers and geochemical evolutions were used to delineate recharge zones, identify groundwater flow paths, characterize fracture flow, and estimate groundwater flow rates and permeability. Radiocarbon dating of groundwater was used to calibrate the MODFLOW model to estimate annual recharge and determine appropriable water for administration by the State.

 

Environmental Protection Agency Economic Assessments

For more than eight years, Lynker Senior Scientist Dr. Cameron Wobus has supported the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in developing national-scale analyses to estimate and quantify the economic impacts of climate change on multiple sectors. He has developed customized models to quantify the impacts of climate change on the downhill skiing industry; damages from inland flooding events; and extreme heat metrics across the United States. Each of these studies has been published in the peer-reviewed literature, and the majority of the results were used to support the National Climate Assessment.

 

 

Jamestown Automated Flood Warning System

In the wake of the September 2013 Jamestown flooding and ensuing damage, the Town of Jamestown, Colorado has been working to improve early warning systems for the Town. This project assessed the current systems in place to provide early flood and rainfall warnings and proposed improvements to that system. In addition, the Lynker team developed a desktop analysis of rainfall and geographic data from the 2013 flood events to evaluate the effectiveness of the existing rain/stream gauge network and flood early warning system near Jamestown.

During the analysis, our team explored numerous geo-spatial data products (point, line, polygon, and raster) for the James Creek watershed to fully understand the meteorological and hydrological response of the basin. Using the spatial data products, we developed a comprehensive heat map of the James Creek region to highlight regions of preferential gauge placement. Our staff performed field site assessments within each of the 4 regions of the watershed identified in the analysis. Preferential gauge sites were located and documented for further review (e.g. GPS coordinates, site photos, and parcel information). We also performed a live transmission test at each field location to evaluate the communication signal strength.

Upon final evaluation of the existing gauge network, site visit analysis, budgetary overview, and communications with emergency management personnel, the Lynker team developed a final recommendation for a new rain gauge location that provides enhanced basin rainfall coverage and the highest likelihood of advanced warning lead time during heavy rainfall events.

The small mountain town of 300 has been cut off because of Boulder County flood. FEMA Urban Search & Rescue (US&R) teams deployed to the state to help in Search and Rescue operations. Steve Zumwalt FEMA

 

Waters of the United States Jurisdiction

For the US Department of Justice, Dr. Cameron Wobus provided technical litigation support for several cases related to Clean Water Act jurisdiction in a variety of different environments. In each case, the legal question was whether particular waters affected by contaminant releases were jurisdictional under either or both of the standards put forth in the 2006 Supreme Court decision in the Rapanos v. United States case. Tasks included review and synthesis of relevant environmental and hydrologic data, site visits, preparation of expert reports, and deposition testimony.

 

 

Deepwater Horizon Injury Assessment

From 2010-2015, Lynker senior scientist Dr. Cameron Wobus assisted the State of Louisiana with data analysis and modeling to support the NRDA for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. His tasks included quantification of miles exposed to shoreline oiling and accelerated coastal erosion rates, the development of a hydrodynamic model of oil fate and transport in Louisiana bays, and the development of techniques to quantify the extent of water column toxicity to early life stage fish in offshore waters.