Scientific and practical tools for dealing with water resource estimations for the future
- Institute for Water Research, Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa
Abstract. Future flow regimes will be different to today and imperfect knowledge of present and future climate variations, rainfall–runoff processes and anthropogenic impacts make them highly uncertain. Future water resources decisions will rely on practical and appropriate simulation tools that are sensitive to changes, can assimilate different types of change information and flexible enough to accommodate improvements in understanding of change. They need to include representations of uncertainty and generate information appropriate for uncertain decision-making. This paper presents some examples of the tools that have been developed to address these issues in the southern Africa region. The examples include uncertainty in present day simulations due to lack of understanding and data, using climate change projection data from multiple climate models and future catchment responses due to both climate and development effects. The conclusions are that the tools and models are largely available and what we need is more reliable forcing and model evlaution information as well as methods of making decisions with such inevitably uncertain information.