Sara Suárez-Almiñana (Spain) 1; Abel Solera (Spain) 1; Joaquín Andreu (Spain) 1; Jaime Madrigal (Spain) 1
1 - Instituto de Ingeniería del Agua y Medio Ambiente, Universitat Politècnica de València
Assessing the risk of drought under the influence of climate change in the Jcar River Basin (JRB) in order to consider it for future basin planning.
Meteorological series from the reference period 1971-2000 and future periods 2011-2040, 2041-2070 and 2071-2100 were downloaded from SWICCA demonstrator. These data came from 9 RCMs of RCPs 4.5 and 8.5, which were bias corrected using quantile mapping technique, adjusted with observed series (Spain02) from the 5 sub-basins that form the JRB. These corrected series were used as input data for several modules of the software AQUATOOL DSS (Andreu et al. 1996 and 2009). The hydrological model of the JRB (EVALHID) was the first element of the modelling chain. It was employed to extract river flows from each RCM and each future period. Then, these river flow series were used as inputs of the risk management model (SIMRISK), where many synthetic series of streamflows taking into account the statistical characteristics of each RCM were extracted. Then, these series were treated in a statistical way in order to obtain a probabilistic indicator of the reservoir storage for each period. This indicator can be obtained for the ensemble, or for each of its members.
The indicator of the probability of reservoir storage shows how the probabilities of having less than 50% of total storage of the system (1,796 hm3) are changing through future periods, resulting in a huge probability of having a worrying storage level (less than 20% of total capacity) for far future. The lower storages happen in autumn, when the irrigation season ends and the change of rainfall patterns or the lack of them may not allow the reservoirs to recharge during these months (also during winter) to store enough water for the following season.
The probabilities of having less dammed water in the system are greater as we move from period to period, showing unsustainable scenarios where the risk of drought is increasingly high. Thus, this study serves for decision-makers as a possible approximation of what could happen in the future, so they become aware of the effects of climate change on water resources and the need of implementing preventive measures. In addition, this methodology is extensible to other basins with the same situation as the JRB.
The authors thank the Spanish Research Agency (MINECO) for the financial support to ERAS project (CTM2016-77804-P, including EU-FEDER funds). Additionally, we also value the support provided by the European Community’s in financing the projects SWICCA (ECMRWF-Copernicus-FA 2015/ C3S_441-LOT1/SMHI) and IMPREX (H2020-WATER-2014Ð2015, 641811).