Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Jeremy Diem

Second Advisor

Ricardo Nogueira

Third Advisor

Luke Pangle


Urbanization has been associated with the degradation of streams, and a consequence of forest to urban land transition is a change in streamflow. Therefore, the purpose of this thesis is to examine the impacts of land-cover change in ten different watersheds in the rapidly urbanizing Atlanta, GA USA metropolitan area. Streamflow and precipitation data for a 30-year period (1986-2016) were analyzed in conjunction with land cover data from 1992, 2001, and 2011. Big Creek and Suwanee Creek experienced the most urbanization and increases (20%) in streamflow and runoff, and high flow (>95th percentile of flow) days doubled and increased 85%, respectively. Precipitation-adjusted streamflow for Peachtree Creek and Flint River decreased about 17%. Runoff ratios for South River were the highest among all watersheds, even the Etowah River, which remained moderately forested and had the most precipitation and slope.