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Title: Drivers of Change in Managed Water Resources: Modeling the Impacts of Climate and Socioeconomic Changes Using the US Midwest as a Case Study

A global integrated assessment model including a water-demand model driven by socio-economics, is coupled in a one-way fashion with a land surface hydrology – routing – water resources management model. The integrated modeling framework is applied to the U.S. Upper Midwest (Missouri, Upper Mississippi, and Ohio) to advance understanding of the regional impacts of climate and socio-economic changes on integrated water resources. Implications for future flow regulation, water supply, and supply deficit are investigated using climate change projections with the B1 and A2 emission scenarios, which affect both natural flow and water demand. Changes in water demand are driven by socio-economic factors, energy and food demands, global markets and prices. The framework identifies the multiple spatial scales of interactions between the drivers of changes (natural flow and water demand) and the managed water resources (regulated flow, supply and supply deficit). The contribution of the different drivers of change are quantified regionally, and also evaluated locally, using covariances. The integrated framework shows that water supply deficit is more predictable over the Missouri than the other regions in the Midwest. The predictability of the supply deficit mostly comes from long term changes in water demand although changes in runoff has a greatermore » contribution, comparable to the contribution of changes in demand, over shorter time periods. The integrated framework also shows that spatially, water demand drives local supply deficit. Using elasticity, the sensitivity of supply deficit to drivers of change is established. The supply deficit is found to be more sensitive to changes in runoff than to changes in demand regionally. It contrasts with the covariance analysis that shows that water demand is the dominant driver of supply deficit over the analysed periods. The elasticity indicates the level of mitigation needed to control the demand in order to reduce the vulnerability of the integrated system in future periods. The elasticity analyses also emphasize the need to address uncertainty with respect to changes in natural flow in integrated assessment.« less
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Journal ID: ISSN 2328-8779; 35201; KP1703020
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Related Information: Terrestrial Water Cycle and Climate Change: Natural and Human-Induced Impacts, 221:169-192
Q Tang and T Oki; John Wiley & Sons, Inc., HOBOKEN, New Jersey, United States.
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US), Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
climate change; water resources management; socio-economic; Midwest; model; PRIMA; elasticity; Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory