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Background & Motivation: What does Climate have to offer? Water and CRM Technical Workshop and Training Addis Ababa, June 30 – July 2, 2009 Credits: IRI, Upmanu Lall, Casey Brown, Dave Watkins.
What does Climate have to offer?
Water and CRM Technical Workshop and Training
Addis Ababa, June 30 – July 2, 2009
Credits: IRI, Upmanu Lall, Casey Brown, Dave Watkins
“Fierce competition for fresh water may well become a source of conflict & wars in the future.”
Kofi Annan, March 2001
260 international basins: +/- tensions: longstanding, always, growing with demand
Source: Grey & Sadoff, World Bank
Semi-Arid and Arid Sub-Tropics and Tropics & Areas w/ High Population Density
In the 20th century the world population tripled – while water use multiplied six-fold!
By 2025 two thirds of the people in the world are expected to live in areas of water shortage or stress.
Source: Vorosmarty et al 2000
4.5 x decrease
7.5 x decrease
Source: World Bank 2005
Managing Water Resource Systems
What can Water Resource Managers do?
Climate Risk Management (CRM)
One definition: “CRM focuses on pressing issues of here and now while factoring in projected changes” (WB)
Protecting against climate hazards so climate opportunities can be utilized
Methodology to increase decision-making as a major pathway to adaptation for climate change by leveraging climate science
An operational definition:
1. Identify hazards associated with climate risks (of all time scales) to the water system
2. Characterize the climate risks
3. Propose/Assess portfolio of solutions/adaptations to key climate (and other) risks
1. Identify hazards associated with climate risk to
the water system
• What are the key climate challenges that the system faces now (e.g., frequent drought, flood events, variable flows)
• What damages occur as functions of these events?
• Where are the impacts felt? Are there distributional effects? Is the environment considered/protected?
• Are there opportunity losses due to risk aversion associated with current climate risks?
2. Characterize hydroclimatic risk
• What are the probabilities, recurrence periods, etc. of hazard causing events
• Is there spatial or temporal structure?
• Are there probable/predictable changes expected?
• What are the most plausible future scenarios and the uncertainty associated with them?
• How do these risks compare to the social, economic, demographic and environmental challenges the water system faces (severity, uncertainty)?
3. Propose/Assess portfolio of solutions/adaptations to
• Incorporate uncertainty of climate futures in the decision process
• May favor flexibility over structure (soft vs hard approaches)
• Solutions have spatial and temporal characteristics that modulate appropriateness based on the climate risks
• Risk solutions are dependent on timeframe of analysis:
- Operational – fixed infrastructure, certain sunk costs
- Planning – infrastructure and other system decisions
Can we leverage applications of climate science to reduce (exploit) negative (positive) impacts of climate variability?
Source: C. Brown (IRI)
Application - Forecasts
Historical Inflow Observations
Sea Surface Temperatures
Global Climate Model
Forecast Inflow for OND 2002
Source: B. Lyon
Probability of exceeding a seasonal rainfall threshold
Choose parameter, quantity (i.e., number of dry spells of 7 or more days), and statistic of interest (i.e. probability of exceedance)
Suitability for Malaria Transmission
Index Insurance for Crops
eg: reservoir inflowdry spell or flood risk
“prob. of exceedance”
* real-time monitoring
Summarizing Climate into Risk Management
= tailored probabilistic climate information within a specific institutional and policy setting