Baccharis Consulting LLC

Water Inundation in C and D Canal Watershed, Delaware (2002-2017)

Picture of the C and D Canal

                                         C and D Canal from the US 13 bridge


Discussion of C and D Canal Watershed

The C and D Canal watershed covers the eastern half of the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal in Delaware, plus some shoreline of the Delaware River near Delaware City and marsh north of Port Penn.  This watershed is artificially created for the movement of maritime traffic from the Chesapeake Bay to Delaware Bay.  Most of the main channel is lined with riprap. The watershed is located between Dragon Run and Augustine Creek watersheds on the west side of Delaware River and forms a watery “collar” on the north side of Delaware.  More information on the watershed can be found at this link.

This watershed does not react to precipitation events as previously discussed in other watersheds.  Most of its water comes from tidal flow between the Chesapeake Bay and Delaware Bay.

C and D Canal Water Inundation



Table 1. C and D Canal Watershed Tidal Water (2002-2017) in acres
2002 6.65 1,092.84 0.00 1,099.49
2007 6.80 1,118.57 0.00 1,125.37
2012 7.94 1,137.21 0.03 1,145.18
2017 12.74 1,160.98 0.03 1,173.75

ECMW = Estuarine Coastal Mesohaline Water (Salinity 5-17 ppt)

ECOW = Estuarine Coastal Oligohaline Water (Salinity 0.5-5 ppt)

ETRW = Estuarine Tidal Riverine Water (Salinity < 0.5 ppt)

Table 1 shows the overall amount of water has increased consistently for the C and D Canal watershed.  The water level was highest in 2017 and the lowest in 2002.  Like the other watersheds, C and D Canal showed the 2007-2012 regression average, but not to the point of negative numbers.

Table 2. Average Rate of C and D Canal Watershed Water Inundation in the 

(2002-2017) in acres/year

 Period  Average Rate (acres/year)
2002-2007 +5.18
2007-2012 +0.78
2012-2017 +8.90

Table 2 shows the water inundation rate regressed in the 2002-2007 period, but then very slightly increased in the 2007 to 2017 period.

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