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Harrison Research Group Global Change and Watershed Biogeochemistry

Will Forney



Master of Science in Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences, School of the Environment, Fall, 2018.

M.E.M. in Landscape Ecology and Physical Sciences, Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University, NC, 1999.

B.A. in Political Science and Economics, Princeton University, NJ, 1993.



Research Interests

Broadly, I am interested in multi-scaled investigations of the roles of climate, hydrology, and land use/land cover on changes to water quantity and quality.  My research is funded by the USDA/NIFA Water Sustainability and Climate grant Watershed Integrated System Dynamics Modeling (WISDM). With a focus on applied science for management purposes in the Pacific Northwest, my objectives for my research are as follows: 1) investigate climatic and hydrologic relationships of river nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorous) in four watersheds, and 2) understand a reach-based model to estimate water quality metrics relevant to watershed management and Total Maximum Daily Loads of the Clean Water Act.

Select Publications

Rose, V. J., W. M. Forney, R. A. Norton, and J. A. Harrison, in review, Catchment characteristics, water quality, and cyanobacterial blooms in Washington and Oregon lakes, Lakes and Reservoir Management.

Forney, W. M., I. B. Oldham, and N. Crescenti, 2013, The development and application of a decision support system for land management in the Lake Tahoe Basin: The Land Use Simulation Model, USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2012–5229, 52 p.

Labiosa, W.B., W. M. Forney, A-M. Esnard, D. Mitsova-Boneva, R. Bernknopf, P. Hearn, D. Hogan, L. Pearlstine, D. Strong, H. Gladwin, and E. Swain, 2013, An integrated multi-criteria scenario evaluation web tool for participatory land-use planning in urbanized areas: The Ecosystem Portfolio Model, Journal of Environmental Modelling & Software, 34 p.,

Forney, W. M., C. E. Soulard, and C. C. Chickadel, 2013, Salmonids, stream temperatures, and solar loading–modeling the shade provided to the Klamath River by vegetation and geomorphology, USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2013–5022, 25 p.

Forney, W. M., R. Raunikar, R. Bernknopf, and S. Mishra, 2012, An economic value of remote sensing information: Application to agricultural production and maintaining groundwater quality, USGS Professional Paper 1796, 60 p.

Bernknopf, R., W. M. Forney, R. Raunikar, and S. Mishra, 2012, Estimating the benefits of land imagery in environmental applications: A case study in nonpoint source pollution of groundwater, in M. Macauley and R. Laxminarayan (eds.), The Value of Information: Methodological Frontiers and New Applications in Environment and Health, Springer, Washington, DC, p. 257-300.

Zhu, Z. (ed.), B. Bergamaschi, R. Bernknopf, D. Clow, D. Dye, S. Faulkner, W. M. Forney, R. Gleason, T. Hawbaker, J. Liu, S. Liu, S. Prisley, B. Reed, M. Reeves, M. Rollins, B. Sleeter, T. Sohl, S. Stackpoole, S. Stehman, R. Striegl, and A. Wein, 2010, A method for assessing carbon stocks, carbon sequestration and greenhouse-gas fluxes in ecosystems of the United States under present conditions and future scenarios, USGS Scientific Investigations Report, 2010-5233, 188 p.

Forney, W. M., C. Raumann, T. Minor, J.L. Smith, J. Vogel, and R. Vitales, 2002, Land use change and effects on water quality and ecosystem health in the Lake Tahoe Basin, Nevada and California: Year 1 Progress, USGS Open File Report, #02-014, Menlo Park, CA, 18 p.

Relevant Work Experience

Teaching assistant, Principals of chemistry, WSU, Vancouver, WA. 2017 – 2018.

Research assistant, Global Change and Watershed Biogeochemistry Laboratory, WSU, Vancouver, WA. 2014 – 2017.

Water resource consultant, Willamette Partnership, Portland, OR. 2013.

Environmental research geographer (Grade 12), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Menlo Park, CA. 2008 – 2013.

Water resource planner and restoration designer, Jones & Stokes, Oakland, CA. 2006 – 2007.

Research director and regional land use planner, Sherwood Design Engineers, San Francisco, CA. 2005 – 2006.

Outdoor educator, Naturalists at Large and Friends of Sausal Creek, Oakland, CA. 2002 – 2005.

Natural resource geographer, USGS, Menlo Park, CA. 1999 – 2001.

Land use database auditor, Long Term Planning Division, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, Zephyr Cove, NV. Summer 1998.

Lab and field researcher, Soils Laboratory, Duke University, Durham, NC. 1997 – 1998.

Environmental and economic research assistant, Biodiversity Conservation Network, World Wildlife Fund, Washington, DC. 1995.

Policy intern, Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy II (MA), Washington, DC.  Summer 1992.


Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography
International Association of Landscape Ecologists
American Geophysical Union
Society for Conservation Biology