Forecast Informed Reservoir Operations

FIRO is a reservoir-operations strategy that better informs decisions to retain or release water by integrating additional flexibility in operation policies and rules with enhanced monitoring and improved weather and water forecasts (American Meteorological Society; 2020).

FIRO is being developed and tested as a collaborative effort in the Russian River Basin (Lake Mendocino), the Santa Ana River Basin (Prado Dam), and the Yuba-Feather River Basins that engages experts and stakeholders in civil engineering, hydrology, meteorology, biology, economics and climate from several federal, state and local, universities and others. There is significant interest and support for developing FIRO at other appropriate locations in the Western U.S. and elsewhere.

Lake Mendocino
Prado Dam
FIRO Colloquium

Jay Jasperse

(Sonoma Water)

John James

(Yuba Water)

John Leahigh

(California Department of Water Resources)

Greg Woodside

(Orange County Water Distrcit)

F. Martin Ralph

(Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes at Scripps Institution of Oceanography)

Cary Talbot

(US Army Corps of Engineers)

Arleen O’Donnell

(Eastern Research Group)

Elissa Yeates

(US Army Corps of Engineers)

Rob Hartman

(RKH Consulting Services)

Eighth Annual Forecast Informed Reservoir Operations (FIRO) Workshop

Wednesday, Oct 13, 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM PT

FIRO Project Updates – Goals, Status, Results, and Challenges to Date

Leaders from current FIRO projects will provide results to date including lessons learned and opportunities/challenges ahead. More details to come!


Wednesday, Nov 10, 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM PT

Expanding FIRO including opening remarks on national USACE policy, National FIRO screening level process, forecast needs associated with FIRO expansion into other parts of the U.S., and integrating FIRO and Water Control Manual Updates.

Wednesday, Dec 8, 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM PT

Science and Technology Advances that Benefit FIRO including opening remarks on progress to date, update on Atmospheric River forecasting tools, new developments in Atmospheric River Reconnaissance, and recent accomplishments from NOAA’s Physical Sciences Laboratory.

Wednesday, Jan 12, 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM PT

FIRO as a Climate Resiliency Strategy (details to come)

We are very much looking forward to and hopeful of a long-awaited in-person meeting. We are designing the workshop program for in-person as long as conditions allow and will incorporate a virtual component for those who cannot travel. We will send periodic updates as time approaches.

Stay tuned for more information, and we look forward to seeing you in La Jolla!

FIRO Workshop Steering Committee

Marty Ralph, Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes, Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Cary Talbot, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Engineer Research and Development Center

Jay Jasperse, Sonoma Water

Greg Woodside, Orange County Water District

John James, Yuba Water Agency

John Leahigh, California Department of Water Resources

Dustin Jones, California Department of Water Resources