Evaluating climate change adaptation measures for a Mediterranean Watershed with stakeholder engagement

19:00 Tuesday 28 May




Elias Giannakis (Cyprus) 1; Christos Zoumides (Cyprus) 1; Adriana Bruggeman (Cyprus) 2; Marios Mouskountis (Cyprus) 3; Ayis Iacovides (Cyprus) 4,5

1 - Associate Research Scientist; 2 - Associate Professor; 3 - Geologist, Environmental Hydrogeologist; 4 - Civil / Environmental Engineer; 5 - Environmental Management Expert

Climate change projections estimate an increase in water scarcity and drought episodes in the Mediterranean region. This study aims to identify and evaluate adaptation measures for minimizing climate-related water supply risks and reducing vulnerabilities of rural communities in semi-arid regions. Within the framework of the BINGO (Bringing INnovation to onGOing water management) project, a climate risk management process was undertaken with local and national stakeholders in Peristerona Watershed, Cyprus. The analysis focuses on the two main water uses, namely, domestic water supply and irrigation.

The main hazards for both sectors are the reduced stream flows and the resulting decrease in groundwater recharge, caused by the reduction and increased variability of precipitation. Risk treatment measures were formulated in cooperation with the risk owners for the domestic water supply and agricultural sectors, i.e., the community councils and irrigation associations, with support from government officers, through two participatory workshops. The adaptation measures to ensure the continuity of water supply to rural households for domestic use include: (a) the expansion of the water desalination distribution pipeline network, and (b) the proper maintenance of groundwater recharge check dams.

The risk treatment options for matching irrigation water demand with available water supply and reduce water losses for the agricultural sector include: (a) the adoption of irrigation scheduling decision support technologies, and (b) the use of treated sewage water for irrigation. A combination of cost-effectiveness and multi-criteria approaches will analyse the economic and societal impact of the selected measures. The cost-effectiveness will provide valuable information to risk owners and decision makers whether a measure is disproportionately costly or expensive, thus resulting in a better informed risk management, while the multi-criteria analysis will link stakeholders’ knowledge about the watershed with their preferences for measures to adapt water resources management to future conditions.