Building global water use scenarios

Tramberend, S. ORCID:, Wiberg, D., Wada, Y. ORCID:, Flörke, M., Fischer, G., Satoh, Y., Yillia, P., van Vliet, M., et al. (2015). Building global water use scenarios. IIASA Interim Report. IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: IR-15-014

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Project: Water futures and solutions initiative (WFaS)


The Water Future and Solutions Initiative (WFaS) develops consistent, multi-model global water scenaros with the aim to analyze the water-food-energy-climate- environment nexus and identify future hotspots of water insecurity and related impacts on food and energy security. WFaS coordinates its work with on-going scenario development in the fifth assessment review of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which has developed climate scenarios based on the Representative Concentration pathways (RCPs) and alternative futures of societal developments described in the Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSPs). In its 'fast-track' scenario assessment WFaS applies available multi-model ensembles of RCP climate scenarios and population, urbanization, and economic development quantifications of the SSPs. Here we interpret SSP narratives to indicate direct or indirect consequences for key water dimensions. Criical scenario assumptions are assessed for different conditions in terms of a country or regions ability to cope with water-related risks and its exposure to complex hydrologcal conditions. For this purpose a classification of hydro-economic challenges across countries has been developed. Scenario assumptions were developed for defined categories of hyro-economic development challenges and relevant features of SSPs. In this way we systematically assess qualitatively key scenario drivers required for global water models We then provide quantifications of assumptions for technological and structural changes for the industry and domestic sector. For the quantification of global scenarios of future water demand, we applied an ensemble of three global water models (H08, PCR-GLOBWB, WaterGAP). Ensemble results of global industrial water withdrawal highlight a steep increase in almost all SSP scenarios. Global amounts across the three models show a wide spread with the highest amounts reaching almost 2000 km^3 yr^-1 by 2050, more than doubled compared to the present industrial water use intensity (850 km^3 yr^-1). Increases in world population result in global domestic water withdrawals by 2050 reaching 700-1500 km^3 yr^-1 depending on scenario and water model. This is an increase of up to 250% compared to the present domestic water use intensity (400-450 km^3 yr^-1). We finally suggest improvements for future water use modelling.

Item Type: Monograph (IIASA Interim Report)
Research Programs: Water (WAT)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 08:54
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:25

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