ArticlePDF Available

Abstract and Figures

Given the important role of hydropower in peak electricity management, Middle Eastern countries are actively pursuing development of more hydropower resources by construction of large dams. Nonetheless, climate change is expected to affect the future productivity of hydropower by influencing the hydrologic cycle and different climate variables in the region. Although reactive plans to minimize climate change impacts on hydropower production have been implemented in the developed world, the developing world can still benefit from proactive actions. Studies of climate change impacts before and during implementation of hydropower projects can result in timely responses and adaptation to climate change with a potential of considerable cost savings. This study investigates the potential impacts of climate change on the hydropower systems in the Karkheh River Basin—the third largest river basin in Iran—in terms of potential for hydroelectricity generation. A simulation model is developed to examine how hydropower generation levels vary for different future climate change scenarios in this representative Middle Eastern basin. The obtained results suggest that the existing operation rules and design specifications, developed based on the historical climatic conditions, can lead to inefficient operations of the hydropower in the basin. Because of insignificant streamflow reductions in the short term, hydropower production may not change considerably in the near future. However, a serious hydropower generation deficit is expected in the midterm and long-term horizons in the Karkheh River Basin. Therefore, adaptation to the future climate change conditions and revision of the operation rule curves and design specifications are essential to optimal hydropower operations in this basin.
Content may be subject to copyright.
Climate Change and Hydropower Planning in the Middle
East: Implications for Irans Karkheh Hydropower Systems
Saeed Jamali, Ph.D.1; Ahmad Abrishamchi, M.ASCE2; and Kaveh Madani, A.M.ASCE3
Abstract: Given the important role of hydropower in peak electricity management, Middle Eastern countries are actively pursuing develop-
ment of more hydropower resources by construction of large dams. Nonetheless, climate change is expected to affect the future productivity
of hydropower by influencing the hydrologic cycle and different climate variables in the region. Although reactive plans to minimize climate
change impacts on hydropower production have been implemented in the developed world, the developing world can still benefit from
proactive actions. Studies of climate change impacts before and during implementation of hydropower projects can result in timely responses
and adaptation to climate change with a potential of considerable cost savings. This study investigates the potential impacts of climate change
on the hydropower systems in the Karkheh River Basinthe third largest river basin in Iranin terms of potential for hydroelectricity
generation. A simulation model is developed to examine how hydropower generation levels vary for different future climate change scenarios
in this representative Middle Eastern basin. The obtained results suggest that the existing operation rules and design specifications, developed
based on the historical climatic conditions, can lead to inefficient operations of the hydropower in the basin. Because of insignificant stream-
flow reductions in the short term, hydropower production may not change considerably in the near future. However, a serious hydropower
generation deficit is expected in the midterm and long-term horizons in the Karkheh River Basin. Therefore, adaptation to the future climate
change conditions and revision of the operation rule curves and design specifications are essential to optimal hydropower operations in this
basin. DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)EY.1943-7897.0000115.© 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers.
CE Database subject headings: Climate change; Hydro power; Simulation; Models; River basins; Middle East.
Author keywords: Climate change; Hydropower; Operations; Simulation; Modeling; Adaptation; Karkheh River Basin; Iran.
Introduction
Accounting for 16% of the electricity production worldwide,
hydropower is one of the most popular energy resources because
of its low cost, near-zero greenhouse gas emissions, and the flex-
ibility it provides in operations (Madani and Lund 2009). Despite
its great advantages over other electricity sources, hydropower is
among the most vulnerable energy sources to changes in global
and regional climates because of its direct dependence on the mag-
nitude and timing of streamflows. Therefore, the availability of hy-
dropower at its current or planned levels remains in question under
the expected climatic changes and associated spatial and temporal
streamflow changes [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC) 2007].
Climate warming can exacerbate the situation of water resources
in the semiarid and arid regions of the world (IPCC 2007). These
effects are of particular importance for the Middle East countries,
which are already experiencing stressed water resources because of
the limited water availability and growing water demand (Sowers
et al. 2011). Temperature is expected to increase up to 4.5°C in the
Middle East by the end of the century, which with the expected
25% decrease in average annual precipitation and the changing
precipitation patterns (Zereini and Hotzl 2008) can create serious
challenges to water resources management in the region. Although
considerable effects on water resources systems are expected in the
region, adaptive measures do not have a high priority in planning in
the Middle Eastern countries (Sowers et al. 2011). These countries
pursue their aggressive development plans, relying on historical
conditions with no climate change effects.
In Iranthe second largest country in the Middle East
hydropower production has a key role in supplying the peak power
demand. The first Iranian hydropower plant was built in 1961 on
the Dez River. Since then, Iran has been actively developing hydro-
power projects. Depending on the hydrologic conditions, hydro-
power represents 615% of the nations electricity and is the
largest renewable energy source in Iran. The present installed
hydropower generation capacity is approximately 9,000 MW and
is expected to reach 28,000 MW in the next two decades based
on the development plans of the Iran Water and Power Resources
Development Company (IWPCO), a state agency that is respon-
sible for construction of dams and hydroelectric power plants
in Iran.
Most of Irans hydroelectric generation capacity is concentrated
in three major river basins, namely, the Karun, Dez, and Karkheh
River Basins. The Karkheh River Basin is the third most productive
basin in Iran in terms of total surface water flow and potential
for hydropower generation. The current total available surface
water storage capacity accounts for only 40% of the potential
surface water storage capacity of 15,000 million cubic meters
(MCM). Therefore, IWPCO is in the process of expanding the
1Assistant Professor, Dept. of Engineering, Islamic Azad Univ., Central
Tehran Branch, Tehran 1965916954, Iran (corresponding author). E-mail:
sae.jamali@iauctb.ac.ir
2Professor, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Sharif Univ. of Technology,
Tehran 1136511155, Iran. E-mail: abrisham@sharif.edu
3Alex Alexander Assistant Professor, Dept. of Civil, Environmental and
Construction Engineering, Univ. of Central Florida, Orlando, FL 32816.
E-mail: kaveh.madani@ucf.edu
Note. This manuscript was submitted on November 5, 2011; approved
on January 15, 2013; published online on January 17, 2013. Discussion
period open until February 1, 2014; separate discussions must be submitted
for individual papers. This paper is part of the Journal of Energy Engi-
neering, Vol. 139, No. 3, September 1, 2013. © ASCE, ISSN 0733-9402/
2013/3-153-160/$25.00.
JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013 / 153
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
hydroelectricity generation capacity in the basin by 2,000 MW by
constructing six new large dams.
Development plans that ignore the potential climate change
impacts are associated with a considerable risk of failure, especially
in developing nations located in water-stressed areas (Brown et al.
2010,2011). Thus, considering the potential effects of climate
change is essential in designing large dam and hydropower projects
to develop systems that are resilient to climate change and its as-
sociated extreme events. Whereas in developed countries adapta-
tion capacity of water resources systems to climate change may
be limited by the design conditions of the existing systems, devel-
oping countries still have a chance to design water resources sys-
tems that provide high flexibility in operations and reasonable
adaptation capacity to cope with climate change. Nevertheless,
timely and early consideration of climate change impacts is neces-
sary to designing and developing systems that are less vulnerable to
climate change.
Given the value of hydropower, both developing and developed
countries have a serious need to study climate change effects on
hydropower production to prepare for future climatic and socioeco-
nomic changes. Therefore, several researchers have studied the
climate change effects on different aspects of hydropower sys-
tems at different scales around the world. Example studies include
studying the climate change impacts on hydropower production in
New Zealand (Garr and Fitzharris 1994), eastern United States
(Robinson 1997), Switzerland (Westaway 2000;Schaefli et al.
2005), Sweden (Bergström et al. 2001), Nepal (Agrawala et al.
2003), the Colombia River Basin (Payne et al. 2004), the Colorado
River Basin (Christensen et al. 2004), United States Pacific north-
west (Markoff and Cullen 2008), California (Medellin-Azuara et al.
2008;Vicuna et al. 2008;Madani and Lund 2010;Connell-Buck
et al. 2011;Guégan et al. 2012a,b), and Canada (Minville et al.
2009,2010); studying the effects of climate change on financial
aspects of hydropower projects (Harrison and Whittington 2001;
Harrison et al. 2003); and studying the climate change impacts
on legal aspects of hydropower systems (Madani 2011;Viers
2011). Reviewing the existing literature reveals the limited concern
of developing countries, especially the Middle Eastern countries,
about the vulnerability of hydropower systems to climate change
because most studies of the subject belong to researchers in western
countries. Climate change has become an issue of concern after
development of hydropower projects in the developed world,
whereas the developing countries ignore climate change effects
during hydropower design and development phases. This is despite
the fact that developing countries can benefit more from proactive
assessment of climate change effects on hydropower projects
than reactive assessment because the former can reduce the cost
of climate change to such countries and modify irreversible devel-
opment plans early on, before the massive hydropower projects are
implemented.
Given the value of hydropower and its current development
status in the Middle East, the objective of this study is to assess
potential vulnerability of an example Middle Eastern hydropower
system to climate change. Irans Karkheh River Basin hydropower
system has been selected for the Middle East and developing world
as an example to underline the value of proactive assessment of
climate change impacts on hydropower to minimize the potential
costs of climate change to hydropower systems.
The paper is structured as follows. The next section describes
the study basin and provides some information on previous regional
climate change studies. Details of the developed simulation model
are presented in Hydropower Operations Modelsection. The
Results and Discussionsection presents the obtained simulation
results under a range of climate change scenarios and reflects how
climate change can affect hydropower production in the basin. The
last section concludes.
Karkheh River Basin
The Karkheh River originates from the Zagros Mountains in west
Iran. After a journey of approximately 900 km, the Karkheh River
discharges in the Hoor-Al-Azim Swamp at the Iran-Iraq border.
The Karkheh River Basin (Fig. 1), with a catchment area of
48,000 km2, is located in southwest Iran (between 3035° northern
latitude and 4649° eastern longitude). Elevation of the Karkheh
Basin ranges from a few meters above sea level (m.a.s.l.) in the
south to more than 3,500 m.a.s.l. in the northeast. The basin has
a Mediterranean climate and more than 64% of annual water flow
occurs from January to May. The basin experiences high spatial and
temporal variation in precipitation (Muthuwatta et al. 2010).
Whereas the Khuzestan plain and southern area of the catchment
is semiarid with mild winters and long hot summers, the northern
parts and the alpine regions have cold winters and mild summers.
Temperature in this area ranges from 25 to 50°C. The average
annual rainfall in the basin varies from 150 mm in the south to
1,000 mm in the north and the east upper Karkheh River. The aver-
age annual flow of the Karkheh River is 5,916 MCM.
The Karkheh River Basin includes approximately 9% of the
total irrigated area of the country and provides 10% of the total
nationally produced wheat (Marjanizadeh 2008;Muthuwatta et al.
2010). Agriculture production, urban water, and fish farming are
the most important water consuming activities in the basin. In
the upper basin, areas with both rainfed and irrigated agriculture
are practiced, but in the lower basin, only irrigated agriculture is
possible because of the drier conditions.
Karkheh River Basin
Dam
Hydropower Plant
River
Karkheh River
Kashkan River
Saymareh River
Qarasou and Gamasiab catchments
Koran Bozan Dam and Hydropower
Saz Bon Dam and Hydropower
Saymareh Dam and Hydropower
Karkheh II Dam and Hydropower
Garsha Dam and Hydropower
Tangeh Mashoureh Dam
and Hydropower
Karkheh Dam and Hydropower
Hoor Al Azim Swamp
Fig. 1. Schematic of the Karkheh River Basin
154 / JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
The Karkheh Reservoir with the storage capacity of 5,600 MCM
(active storage capacity of approximately 4,600 MCM) and the
Karkheh hydropower station have been in operation since 1999.
Given the great potential of the Karkheh River Basin for hydroelec-
tric generation, five additional large hydropower dams are already
under study, and one dam is under construction. Characteristics of
these dams and their tentative locations are shown in Table 1and
Fig. 1, respectively.
Average annual flow of the Karkheh River is approximately
36% of the total planned storage capacity. The high ratio of storage
capacity to river flow may make the system vulnerable to natural
climatic changes that are expected to affect water availability in the
basin. Jamali et al. (2012) studied the hydrologic effects of climate
change on the Karkheh River Basin by downscaling the results of
two general circulation models, namely CGCM3 and HadCM3,
under three emission scenarios, i.e., A1B, A2, and B1. Results were
obtained for three 20-year horizons, i.e., 2020s (20112030),
2050s (20412060), and 2080s (20712090). Both CGCM3 and
HadCM3 outputs for all emission scenarios showed an increase
in downscaled monthly mean temperature over all months in all
considered time horizons. An average temperature increase of ap-
proximately 0.9, 2.0, and 2.5°C are expected in the basin under the
future climate change scenarios in the 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s,
respectively. The projected increase in mean temperature is higher
Table 1. Karkheh River Basin Reservoirs
Reservoir Current condition
Normal level
(m.a.s.l)
Normal storage
(MCM) Purpose
Installation
capacity (MW)
Karkheh Under operation 220 4,616 Hydropower/Agriculture 400
Saymareh Under construction 720 2,474 Hydropower 480
Garsha Under study 1,245 1,385 Hydropower 280
Koran Bozan Under study 1,090 3,350 Hydropower 330
Saz Bon Under study 850 1,576 Hydropower 360
Tangeh Mashoureh Under study 1,400 1,640 Hydropower/Agriculture 154
Karkheh II (Run of the River Karkheh) Under study 375 317 Hydropower 300
za
S
nazoBnaroK
a
hsra
GBon Saymareh
Mean Monthly Inflow (MCM)Mean Monthly Inflow (MCM)Mean Monthly Inflow (MCM)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
0% 20 % 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
0% 20 % 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
0% 20 % 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%)
Historical
HadCM-A1B HadCM-A2 HadCM-B1
CGCM-A2 CGCM-B1
CGCM-A1B
Fig. 2. Inflow exceedence probability curves for each dam in different time periods
JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013 / 155
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
in the months of June, July, and August in comparison to other
months. The annual amount of rainfall is not expected to change
considerably, but rainfall timing will change. As a result, peak rain-
fall will shift from spring to winter. Climate change can lead to
considerable reduction in streamflow. Average streamflow reduc-
tion of 5, 15, and 27% are expected in the basin under the future
climate change scenarios in the 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s, respec-
tively. Currently, the hydropower systems of the basin are fed by
the streamflow resulting from precipitation in winter and spring
months and snowmelt during the spring. Under climate change,
peak streamflow shifts to earlier months because of earlier snow-
melt and more precipitation in the form of rain rather than snow
(Jamali et al. 2012).
The expected changes in the magnitude and timing of stream-
flows can affect hydropower operations in the basin. Therefore,
early investigation of the potential effects can help the decision
makers of the basin in revising their hydropower development
plans to prevent inefficient operations in the future.
Hydropower Operations Model
In this study, MODSIM (Shafer and Labadie 1978) is used to de-
velop a hydropower operations model that can provide useful in-
sights into hydropower planning and management in the basin. The
MODSIM model facilitates modeling complex water systems
through transforming the river basin to a network of nodes and
Mean Monthly Inflow (
MCM
) Mean Monthly Inflow (
MCM
)Mean Monthly Inflow (
MCM
)
0
400
800
1200
1600
2000
0%
0
400
800
1200
1600
2000
0
400
800
1200
1600
Karkheh II
20% 40% 60% 80% 100% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Exceedence Probability (%) Exceedence Probability (%)
Exceedence Probability (%) Exceedence Probability (%)
Exceedence Probability (%) Exceedence Probability (%)
0
500
1000
1500
2000
2500
0
500
1000
1500
2000
2500
0
400
800
1200
1600
2000
Karkheh
Historical
HadCM-A1B HadCM-A2 HadCM-B1
CGCM-A2 CGCM-B1
CGCM-A1B
Fig. 2. (Continued.)
(a)
(b)
(c)
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
1979 1982 1985 1988 1991 1994 1997 2012 2015 2018 2021 2024 2027 2030
Hydropower Production (GWh)
Year
2020s
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
1979 1982 1985 1988 1991 1994 1997 2042 2045 2048 2051 2054 2057 2060
Hydropower Production (GWh)
Year
2050s
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
1979 1982 1985 1988 1991 1994 1997 2072 2075 2078 2081 2084 2087 2090
Hydropower Production (GWh)
Year
2080s
Control Period Pessimistic Scenario Optimistic Scenario
Fig. 3. Comparison of the annual mean hydropower production during
the control period with historical climate and during different time hor-
izons for optimistic and pessimistic climate change scenarios: (a) 2020s
(HadCM B1, CGCM A1B); (b) 2050s (HadCM A2, HadCM A1B);
(c) 2080s (CGCM B1, CGCM A2)
-35
-30
-25
-20
-15
-10
-5
0
5
10
15
CGCM-A1B CGCM-A2 CGCM-B1 HadCM-A1B HadCM-A2 HadCM-B1
%
Change in Annual Mean Hydropower Production
2020s
2050s
2080s
Fig. 4. Estimated changes in Karkheh River Basins average annual
hydropower production for different climate change scenarios in the
2020s, 2050s, and 2080s with respect to the historical conditions
156 / JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
links. To find the optimal decision, MODSIM employs a minimum
cost network flow algorithm that solves a linear optimization
problem in a specified time step over a desired planning horizon.
This model uses a capable network flow optimization algorithm,
combining simulation with optimization to determine optimal
flows within the network. Detailed information about MODSIM
can be found in Labadie (2010a,b).
Reservoir operation rules, suggested by the Karkheh River
Basins integrated water resource planning study (IWPCO 2011),
are used in developing the hydropower operations model that sim-
ulates the Karkheh River Basin operations under any given climate
scenario. These standard operation policy (SOP)-based reservoir
operation rules suggest matching release to demand as long as the
available storage (AS) exceeds the demand (assuming there is
enough storage capacity and spillage is not required) and releases
the AS otherwise.
The developed model is used to examine the potential climate
change impacts on hydroelectricity production in the basin. The
MODSIM model applies the following equation to calculate hydro-
power generation in high-head power plants:
Pi;t¼MIN½K·Qi;t·¯
Hi;t·eiðQi;t;¯
Hi;tÞ;Pi;maxð1Þ
where for powerplant iduring period t,Pi;t=power output; Qi;t=
water flowing through the turbine (release rate); ¯
Hi;t=mean
effective head; eiðQi;t;Hi;tÞ=plant efficiency as a function of Qi;t
and ¯
Hi;t;K=water-to-electricity conversion ratio; and Pi;max =
maximum generation capacity of the power plant.
On-peak hydroelectricity generation can be calculated as
EP
i;t¼Pi;t×ΔTP
i;tð2Þ
where ΔTP
i;t=total hours of on-peak generation of powerplant iin
time period t. Off-peak hydropower generation of the same power-
plant is then calculated as
Table 2. Average Change in Annual Hydropower Production for Different
Climate Scenarios in the 2020s, 2050s, and 2070s with Respect to
Historical Climate Conditions during the Control Period
Hydropower
plant
CGCM3 HadCM3
Decade
A1B
(%)
A2
(%)
B1
(%)
A1B
(%)
A2
(%)
B1
(%)
Garsha 2020s 18 12 14 11 210
2050s 30 36 17 21 118
2080s 32 39 24 53 29 25
Koran
Bozan
2020s 18 11 14 11 210
2050s 30 37 16 26 117
2080s 33 38 25 49 31 27
Saz Bon 2020s 13 611 749
2050s 25 30 14 25 018
2080s 29 32 23 33 30 23
Saymareh 2020s 13 626 6417
2050s 23 23 10 28 139
2080s 26 30 43 31 28 46
Karkheh II 2020s 514228
2050s 11 13 913 211
2080s 16 16 11 14 15 14
Karkheh 2020s 413208
2050s 11 11 10 13 512
2080s 16 15 12 12 15 16
Total 2020s 11 58629
2050s 20 24 12 19 215
2080s 24 26 19 29 23 20
(c)
(b)(a)
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
9000
Generation (GWh)
Time equal or exceeded (%)
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
9000
Generation (GWh)
Time equal or exceeded (%)
Historical CGCM-A1B CGCM-A2 CGCM-B1
HadCM-A1B HadCM-A2 HadCM-B1
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
9000
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Generation (GWh)
Time equal or exceeded (%)
Fig. 5. Total hydropower generation duration curve for three horizons: (a) 2020s; (b) 2050s; (c) 2080s
JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013 / 157
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
EO
i;t¼Pi;t×ðΔTtΔTP
i;tÞð3Þ
where ΔTt=total number of hours in period t.
Eqs. (1)(3) are used to estimate the on-peak and off-peak
hydropower generation. In the original MODSIM formulation,
run-of-the-river projects are modeled as hydropower plants below
reservoirs with no storage capacity and constant ¯
Hi;t. However, this
may not be applicable to the Karkheh II powerplant, which has a
limited storage capacity and is used for regulation of the flow.
Therefore, the following equation is used to estimate the power out-
put of this powerplant:
ΔTKarkheh II;t¼MINK·Qt·¯
Ht·eKarkheh IIðQt;¯
HtÞ
Pt;max
;
×The number of hours per time periodð4Þ
where ΔTKarkheh II;t=number of hours Karkheh II powerplant runs
during period t; and Qt=upstream inflow (volume/time period).
This equation implies that the Karkheh II powerplant is operated at
any time when inflow is sufficient (operation is not limited to the
on-peak and spill times only).
Results and Discussion
The model was run for 18 different climate change scenarios
extracted from a previous climate change impact assessment study
in this basin (Jamali et al. 2012). Fig. 2shows the mean monthly
inflow exceedence probability curves for the six reservoirs of the
basin in different time horizons. These curves result from the op-
eration rules suggested by the Karkheh River Basin integrated
water resource planning study (IWPCO 2011) based on the histori-
cal climatic conditions. The first observation is that there is no
significant reduction in mean monthly inflow to all reservoirs in the
first time period. In fact, for some climate change scenarios, a slight
increase in high flows is expected during the first time period. In the
second and third time periods, a decrease of 2580% in both high
and low flows is expected for most future climate scenarios. The
magnitude of flow reduction significantly increases in the 2070
2090 period. Low flows will decrease at all reservoirs. The
projected inflow changes can affect the performance of the basins
hydropower systems, having important implications for reservoir
operations.
Fig. 3compares the average annual hydropower production
under the historical climatic conditions during the control period
with that under the optimistic and pessimistic climate change
scenarios during different future time horizons. Generally, optimis-
tic scenarios (from the hydrological standpoint) suggest lower
reductions of annual runoff or even minimal increase in the total
annual runoff. Here, HadCM-B1, HadCM-A2, and CGCM-B1 can
be considered as optimistic scenarios in the 2020s, 2050s, and
2080s, respectively. Pessimistic scenarios suggest higher levels
of decrease in the annual flows. Here, CGCM-A1B, HadCM-
A1B, and CGCM-A2 represent the pessimistic scenarios in the
2020s, 2050s, and 2080s, respectively. The results indicate that
the future average annual production in almost all scenarios will
decrease. The reduction in production in all periods is mainly attrib-
utable to decreasing reservoir inflows under the drier conditions
with climate change.
Fig. 4shows the estimated changes in the average annual hydro-
power production in the basin for different climate change scenar-
ios in different future time periods with respect to the control period
with historical climatic conditions. The expected generation losses
under all scenarios (expect for two climate change scenarios in the
2020s) suggest that the Karkheh River Basin hydropower plants
will not be able to meet the target hydropower generation level,
based on the design specifications, relying on historical climate
conditions. Although the average annual hydropower generation
reduction may not be considerable in the first time period (near
to 3.5%), the expected reduction is considerable in the second
and third periods (15 and 24%, respectively). Table 2shows ex-
pected average variations of hydroelectricity production of each hy-
dropower plant in the basin under future climatic conditions in
different time horizons with respect to historical climatic conditions
in the control period. This table suggests that generally, hydro-
power production is expected to decrease at all plants in the future
(except for two climate change scenarios in the first time horizon).
The greatest hydropower generation reduction is expected at the
Saymareh, Saz Bon, Garsha, and Koran Bozan hydropower plants
in the first time horizon (expect for two climate change scenarios).
Other hydropower plants will not experience serious electricity
production deficits during this period. Decrease in hydropower
production is more significant in the second and third horizons
for all hydropower plants. The Saz Bon, Saymareh, Garsha, and
10
0
20
0
30
0
40
0
50
0
60
0
70
0
80
0
90
0
Generation (GWh)
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
Generation (GWh)
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
Generation (GWh)
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
(a)
(b)
(c)
Fig. 6. Average monthly hydropower generation in the basin for 342
three horizons: (a) 2020s; (b) 2050s; (c) 2080s
158 / JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
Koran Bozan hydropower plants can experience serious generation
reductions (up to 50%) in these time periods.
Fig. 5shows the total hydropower production exceedence
curves for different climate scenarios in the 2020s, 2050s, and
2070s. The expected hydropower generation reductions become
more significant in the 2050s and 2080s. The significant reduction
in hydropower generation is very important, given the fact that
these reservoirs are already in construction or will be constructed
based on the design plans, which completely ignore the climate
change effects. The inability of the system to meet the target hydro-
power generation reductions is attributable to plans that have been
developed and are in implementation without recognition of cli-
mate change impacts on the Karkheh River Basin.
Fig. 6indicates the average monthly hydropower generation in
the basin for different climate scenarios in the 2020s, 2050s, and
2080s. In the first period, reduction in annual generation is not sig-
nificant. Monthly generation variation in this period ranges from
þ10% in February to 11% in May and June. In the 2050s, gen-
eration losses will be more, and can be up to 31% in May and June.
During the last period, higher hydropower generation reductions
are expected (up to 40% in May and June). Moreover, deficit in
peak of electricity demand can be as high as 20% in this period.
Table 3provides an overview of the estimated average seasonal
and annual hydropower productions in different study periods.
Results suggest that the decrease in the total annual hydropower
generation is mainly attributable to the expected hydropower
generation reduction during spring. The springs hydropower re-
duction is expected to increase over time as a result of projected
drier conditions. In Iran, hydropower plays a key role in providing
electricity during warm months when the electricity demand is
higher for cooling. Therefore, the availability of hydroelectricity
is of considerable importance during hotter (summer) months.
The study results suggest that fortunately, hydropower generation
reduction is not significant during summer months.
Conclusions
Potential climate change impacts on hydropower systems of the
Karkheh River Basin were examined in this study. Results indicate
that the expected climate change impacts on hydrological variables
will substantially affect hydropower generation in the basin.
Because of insignificant streamflow reductions in the 2020s, hydro-
power production may not change considerably during this period.
However, serious hydropower generation deficit is expected in the
2050s and 2080s in the Karkheh River Basin. Results indicate that
in the first period, hydroelectricity reduction is less than 4%. In the
second and third periods, reduction may be more than 15 and 23%,
respectively. These significant expected reductions in hydropower
generation under future climatic conditions in the basin suggest
that operation rules and the suggested design specifications for
future hydropower projects in the basin may result in suboptimal
hydropower operations. The Garsha, Koran Bozan, Saz Bon, and
Saymareh hydropower plants are expected to experience serious
challenges in meeting the target generation levels under future
climatic conditions.
Given the limited availability of water resources in the region,
reconsideration of hydropower development plans is necessary to
avoid future failures in meeting the target hydropower production
levels. With timely consideration of future climatic conditions and
appropriate adaptive actions, future undesired conditions can be
avoided in the basin. Such appropriate actions may include revi-
sions of the suggested operations rules and omitting some reser-
voirs and/or hydropower plants from the system, which can be
the focus of future studies. It should be noted that although recon-
sideration of hydropower development plans might not necessarily
result in increased hydropower production, it can result in consid-
erable cost savings by preventing implementation of overdesigned
projects.
Acknowledgments
The authors are thankful to Eisa Bozorgzadeh, Ali Heidari, and
Mahmoud Talebbidokhti at IWPCO for providing valuable advice
and data.
References
Agrawala, S., Raksakulthai, V., Aalst, M. V., Larsen, P., Smith, J., and
Reynolds, J. (2003). Development and climate change in Nepal: Focus
on water resources and hydropower, Organization for Economic
Co-operation and Development (OECD), Paris.
Bergström, S., Carlsson, B., and Gardelin, M. (2001). Climate change im-
pacts on runoff in SwedenAssessments by global climate models,
dynamical downscaling and hydrological modeling.Clim. Res., 16(2),
101112.
Brown, C., Meeks, R., Ghile, Y., and Hunu, K. (2010). An empirical analy-
sis of the effects of climate variables on national level economic
growth.World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 5357, World
Bank, Washington, DC.
Brown, C., Meeks, R., Hunu, K., and Yu, W. (2011). Hydro climatic risk
to economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa.Clim. Change, 106(4),
621647.
Christensen, N. S., Wood, A. W., Voisin, N., Lettenmaier, R. N., and
Palmer, R. N. (2004). The effects of climate change on the hydrology
and water resources of the Colorado River Basin.Clim. Change,
62(13), 337363.
Connell-Buck, C. R., Medellin-Azuara, J., Lund, J. R., and Madani, K.
(2011). Adapting Californias water system to warm vs. dry climates.
Clim. Change, 109(Suppl 1), S133S149.
Garr, C., and Fitzharris, B. (1994). Sensitivity of mountain runoff and
hydro-electricity to changing climate.Mountain Environments in
Changing Climates, Beniston, M., ed., Routeledge, London, UK, 4.
Guégan, M., Madani, K., and Uvo, C. B. (2012a). Climate change
effects on the high-elevation hydropower system with consideration
of warming impacts on electricity demand and pricing.CEC-500-
2012-020, California Energy Commission, Sacramento, CA.
Guégan, M., Uvo, C. B., and Madani, K. (2012b). Developing a module
for estimating climate warming effects on hydropower pricing in
California.Energy Policy, 42, 261271.
Harrison, G. P., and Whittington, H. W. (2001). Impact of climatic change
on hydropower investment.Hydropower in the New Millennium,
Proc., 4th Int. Conf. on Hydropower Development (Hydropower '01),
Bergen, Norway, 257261.
Table 3. Average Hydropower Generation in GWh for Annual and Seasonal Periods
Decade Spring Summer Autumn Winter Annual
2020s 1,754 (8%) 743 (1%) 699 (3%) 1,090 (4%) 4,284 (3%)
2050s 1,402 (27%) 671 (10%) 641 (11%) 972 (7%) 3,678 (15%)
2080s 1,219 (36%) 656 (12%) 633 (12%) 940 (10%) 3,456 (24%)
Note: The number in parentheses indicates changes with reference to historical data.
JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013 / 159
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
Harrison, G. P., Whittington, H. W., and Wallace, A. R. (2003). Climate
change impacts on financial risk in hydropower projects.IEEE Trans.
Power Syst., 18(4), 13241330.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). (2007). Summary for
policymakers. Climate change 2007: The physical science basis. Con-
tribution of the working group I to the fourth assessment report of the
intergovernmental panel on climate change, Cambridge University
Press, Cambridge, UK.
Iran Water, and Power Resources Development Company (IWPCO).
(2011). Karkheh River Basin integrated water resources planning
study.Technical Rep., Tehran, Iran (in Farsi).
Jamali, S., Abrishamchi, A., and Marino, M. (2012). Climate change
impact assessment on hydrology of Karkheh Basin.Water Manag.,
166(2), 93104.
Labadie, J. (2010a). MODSIM: Decision support system for river basin
management, documentation and user mannual, Colorado State Univ.
and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Ft. Collins, CO.
Labadie, J. (2010b). MODSIM: Decision support system for river basin
management, technical appendices, Colorado State Univ. and U.S.
Bureau of Reclamation, Ft. Collins, CO.
Madani, K. (2011). Hydropower licensing and climate change: Insights
from cooperative game theory.Adv. Water Resour., 34(2), 174183.
Madani, K., and Lund, J. R. (2009). Modeling Californias high-elevation
hydropower systems in energy units.Water Resour. Res., 45(9),
W09413.
Madani, K., and Lund, J. R. (2010). Estimated impacts of climate warming
on Californias high-elevation hydropower.Clim. Change, 102(34),
521538.
Marjanizadeh, S. (2008). Developing a best case scenariofor Karkheh
River Basin management (2025 horizon): A case study from
Karkheh River Basin, Iran.Ph.D. thesis, Univ. of Natural Resources
and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna, Austria.
Markoff, M. S., and Cullen, A. C. (2008). Impact of climate change on
Pacific Northwest hydropower.Clim. Change, 87(34), 451469.
Medellin-Azuara, J., et al. (2009). Adaptability and adaptations of
California's water supply system to dry climate warming.Clim Chang.,
87, S75S90.
Minville, M., Brissette, F., Krau, S., and Leconte, R. (2009). Adaptation
to climate change in the management of a Canadian water-resources
system exploited for hydropower.Water Resour. Manage., 23(14),
29652986.
Minville, M., Krau, S., Brissette, F., and Leconte, R. (2010). Behaviour
and performance of a water resource system in Québec (Canada) under
adapted operating policies in a climate change context.Water Resour.
Manage., 24(7), 13331352.
Muthuwatta, L. P., Ahmad, M., Bos, M. G., and Rientjes, T. H. M. (2010).
Assessment of water availability and consumption in the Karkheh
River Basin, Iran using remote sensing and geo-statistics.Water
Resour. Manage., 24(3), 459484.
Payne, J. T., Wood, A. W., Hamlet, A. F., Palmer, R. N., and
Lettenmaier, R. N. (2004). Mitigating the effects of climate change
on the water resources of the Columbia River Basin.Clim. Change,
62(13), 233256.
Robinson, P. J. (1997). Climate change and hydropower generation.Int.
J. Climatol., 17(9), 983996.
Schaefli, B., Hingray, B., and Musy, A. (2005). Climate change and
hydropower production in the Swiss Alps: Quantification of potential
impacts and related modeling uncertainties.Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci.,
9(1/2), 95109.
Shafer, J., and Labadie, J. (1978). Synthesis and calibration of a river basin
water management model.Completion Rep. No. 89, Colorado Water
Resources Research Institute, Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins, CO.
Sowers, J., Vengosh, A., and Weinthal, E. (2011). Climate change, water
resources, and the politics of adaptation in the Middle East and North
Africa.Clim. Change, 104(34), 599627.
Vicuna, S., Leonardson, R., Hanemann, M. W., Dale, L. L., and
Dracup, J. A. (2008). Climate change impacts on high elevation hydro-
power generation in Californias Sierra Nevada: A case study in the
Upper American River.Clim. Change, 87(Suppl. 1), S123S137.
Viers, J. H. (2011). Hydropower relicensing and climate change.J. Am.
Water Resour. Assoc., 47(4), 655661.
Westaway, R. (2000). Modeling the potential effects of climate change
on the grande dixence hydro-electricity scheme, Switzerland.Water
Environ. J., 14(3), 179185.
Zereini, F., and Hotzl, H. (2008). Climate changes and water resources in
the Middle East and North Africa, Springer, Environmental Science and
Engineering, Berlin.
160 / JOURNAL OF ENERGY ENGINEERING © ASCE / SEPTEMBER 2013
J. Energy Eng. 2013.139:153-160.
Downloaded from ascelibrary.org by Syracuse University Library on 09/04/13. Copyright ASCE. For personal use only; all rights reserved.
... Thus, any practical long-term plans for the water resources of the Karkheh River basin must, in a way, address the WEF security nexus. Typically, the Karkheh River basin experiences high spatiotemporal variations in precipitation and air temperature 42 . Accordingly, the southern part of the basin receives an average annual precipitation of approximately 150 mm, while the average annual precipitation in the northern and northeastern parts is reported to be as high as 1000 mm. ...
... Overall, the southern area of the catchment can be classified as semi-arid with mild winters and long hot summers, while the northern part and www.nature.com/scientificreports/ the alpine regions have cold winters and mild summers. As a result, both rain-fed and irrigated agriculture are practiced in the northern part of the basin, while irrigated agriculture is solely practiced in the southern part of the basin due to its arid climate 42,43 . The Karkheh River, which is originated from the Zagros Mountains in Western Iran, is approximately 900 km long and discharges into the Hoor-Al-Azim swamp at the Iran-Iraq border. ...
Article
Full-text available
From the perspective of the water–energy–food (WEF) security nexus, sustainable water-related infrastructure may hinge on multi-dimensional decision-making, which is subject to some level of uncertainties imposed by internal or external sources such as climate change. It is important to note that the impact of this phenomenon is not solely limited to the changing behavior patterns of hydro-climatic variables since it can also affect the other pillars of the WEF nexus both directly and indirectly. Failing to address these issues can be costly, especially for those projects with long-lasting economic lifetimes such as hydropower systems. Ideally, a robust plan can tolerate these projected changes in climatic behavior and their associated impacts on other sectors, while maintaining an acceptable performance concerning environmental, socio-economic, and technical factors. This study, thus, aims to develop a robust multiple-objective decision-support framework to address these concerns. In principle, while this framework is sensitive to the uncertainties associated with the climate change projections, it can account for the intricacies that are commonly associated with the WEF security network. To demonstrate the applicability of this new framework, the Karkheh River basin in Iran was selected as a case study due to its critical role in ensuring water, energy, and food security of the region. In addition to the status quo, a series of climate change projections (i.e., RCP 2.6, RCP 4.5, and RCP 8.5) were integrated into the proposed decision support framework as well. Resultantly, the mega decision matrix for this problem was composed of 56 evaluation criteria and 27 feasible alternatives. A TOPSIS/Entropy method was used to select the most robust renovation plan for a hydropower system in the basin by creating a robust and objective weighting mechanism to quantify the role of each sector in the decision-making process. Accordingly, in this case, the energy, food, and environment sectors are objectively more involved in the decision-making process. The results revealed that the role of the social aspect is practically negligible. The results also unveiled that while increasing the power plant capacity or the plant factor would be, seemingly, in favor of the energy sector, if all relevant factors are to be considered, the overall performance of the system might resultantly become sub-optimal, jeopardizing the security of other aspects of the water–energy–food nexus.
... Average temperature increases of approximately 0.9, 2.0, and 2.5 • C in the basin are anticipated due to climate change in the 2020 s, 2050 s, and 2080 s, respectively [51]. Peak rainfall may shift from spring to winter, and considerable reductions in streamflow may occur. ...
... Peak rainfall may shift from spring to winter, and considerable reductions in streamflow may occur. Average streamflow reductions of 5%, 15%, and 27% are expected in the basin in the 2020 s, 2050 s, and 2080 s, respectively [51]. Currently, the hydropower systems of the basin are fed by streamflow originating from precipitation in winter and spring as well as spring snowmelt. ...
Article
A novel, smart, supply-side management approach is proposed for optimal operation of multi-purpose hydro reservoirs using the water/energy nexus concept and introducing a hydropower pinch analysis (HyPoPA). The nexus among water and energy sources and sinks are considered to develop hydropower composite curves, grand composite curves, and continuous composite curves. These graphical tools are accompanied by hydropower cascade tables to facilitate numerical analysis of conservation and recovery of water resources at high resolution. The minimum hydro storage is targeted, and three management cases are determined by obtaining the surplus (or deficit) head of a hydro reservoir in successive operational years in unreliable, reliable, and self-sufficient cases. The effects of climate change are predicted using smart algorithms to manage varying downstream energy and water sinks under optimal conditions by HyPoPA. Two prediction scenarios are developed to mimic annual operation and online monitoring cases using advanced neural networks. Karkheh hydro reservoir serves as a case study to verify smart HyPoPA. The results showed that the sources were successfully predicted employing a hybrid long short-term memory and gated recurrent unit network in 2018 (R² = 97.3%, MAPE = 15.9%), which was a dry year when reservoir water levels fell in a non-reliable case with deficit head. The Karkheh reservoir produced 37.2 GWh more hydroelectricity and saved 1.66 billion m³ of water after meeting all water requirements using the smart HyPoPA in the target year.
... Climate change may significantly alter hydrological processes affecting water quality and quantity ( Jamali et al. 2013;Abera et al. 2018;Ekwueme & Agunwamba 2021;Feistel & Hellmuth 2021;Hassanjabbar et al. 2021;Shah et al. 2021). Therefore, understanding the impact of other significant drivers such as climate change helps water managers make better contributions and decisions to solve water quality degradation and conserve aquatic ecosystems. ...
Article
In this study, the artificial neural network (ANN) method was applied to investigate the impacts of climate change on the water quantity and quality of the Qu’Appelle River in Saskatchewan, Canada. First, the second-generation Canadian earth system model (CanESM2) was adopted to predict future climate conditions. The Statistical DownScaling Model (SDSM) was then applied to downscale the generated data. To analyze the water quality of the river, concentrations of dissolved oxygen (DO) and total dissolved solids (TDSs) from the river were collected. Using the collected climate and hydrometric data, the ANNs were trained to simulate (i) the ratio of snowfall-to-total precipitation based on the temperature, (ii) the river flow rate based on the temperature and precipitation; and (iii) DO and TDS concentrations based on the river flow and temperature. Finally, the generated climate change data were used as inputs to the ANN model to investigate the climate change impacts on the river flow as well as DO and TDS concentrations within the selected region. Hydrologic alteration of the river was evaluated via the Range of Variability Approach (RVA) under historical and climate change scenarios. The results under climate change scenarios were compared with those under historical scenarios and indicated that climate change would lead to a heterogeneous change in precipitation and temperature patterns. These changes would have serious degrading impacts on the river discharge as well as DO and TDS concentration levels, causing deterioration in the sustainability of the river system and ecological health of the region.
... Numerous studies have been conducted on modeling water resources systems by focusing on quality flow parameters (Emamgholizadeh et al. 2014;Keshavarzi et al. 2015;Jafari et al. 2019;Khorasani et al. 2020;Shirnezhad et al. 2021;Behboudian et al. 2021). Multiple studies have been conducted on Iranian basins to investigate the effect of climate changes on water resources and to analyze their results (Marofi et al. 2012;Jamali et al. 2013;Dehghani et al. 2014;Moazami et al. 2016;Adib et al. 2020). In these studies, the simulation model for operating water resources at the basin level has not been calibrated, and exact calculations with acceptable details have not been presented. ...
Article
Full-text available
Having systematic simulation and optimization models with high computational accuracy is one of the most important problems in developing decision support systems. In the present research, a specific methodology was proposed for decentralized calibration of complex water resources system models by using the structural capabilities of the melody search algorithm. This methodology was implemented in the framework of a self-adaptive simulation–optimization model that helps fine-tune complex water resources models by introducing a new definition of the way sub-memories are related to each. The introduced structure aims to achieve the highest possible level of consistency, which is estimated by using different criteria, between model results and observed data at several control points of surface flows. The introduced strategy was put to the test in developing a water resources model for the Great Karun Watershed, Iran, and was found to produce accurate results compared to some other well-known optimization algorithms such as GA, HS, PSO, SGHS, EMPSO, and SaMeS. In an attempt to determine the effect of calibration on water resources system modeling, 16 calibration models of different dimensions are developed and their computational costs are compared in terms of their computation time and effects on the accuracy of the results. HIGHLIGHTS A modified version of melody search algorithm is proposed to calibrate distributed water resources simulation models.; The efficiency of the proposed algorithm in solving calibration problems is evaluated compared to some other well-known metaheuristic algorithms.; The effect of calibration dimension on the result accuracy and the computational cost of the calibration process are considered using 16 different models.;
... Overall, several studies showed that the timing of streamflow and the overall magnitude of rainfall and streamflow expected to change due to climate variability and change [17], [18]which affects the overall hydropower reservoir planning and operation because hydropower is directly dependent on the magnitude and timing of streamflow [19]. In Ethiopia, most hydropower reservoir projects were planned, designed, and operated based on past climate history and the assumption that future hydrological patterns will follow historic patterns. ...
Article
Full-text available
Planning and optimal operation of reservoirs under the paradigm of climate change is one of the most momentous problems in the planning and management of water resources due to the rapid growth of economy and population. In this study, Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) and reservoir operation optimization (HEC-ResPRM) models have been employed in the three cascade hydropower reservoirs in Tekeze basin, Ethiopia to investigate the impact of planned cascade reservoirs' operation on the existing reservoir on the face of climate change. Results showed that an increase in rainfall and temperature in the future will be critical to future inflow in cascade hydropower reservoirs, with rainfall variability having a greater impact than temperature variability. HEC-ResPRM was prepared to reproduce optimum hydropower reservoir storage and water levels on the joint cascade operation of Tekeze reservoirs in each mode under climate change effect. Joint optimum operation of cascade reservoirs in different operation modes under climate change in both RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 climate scenarios affects existing reservoir operation in the future. Therefore, it is better to improve existing reservoir operation before investing into new planned cascade reservoirs and incorporate climate change scenarios in the planning, design, and operation of new reservoirs in Tekeze Basin. The results of this study can help the water resources planners and managers to plan and manage the future water resources of Ethiopian Rivers.
... The global mean surface temperature increased by 0.87°C from 2006 to 2015 compared to the historical average over the 1850-1900 period and the increase is projected to reach 1.5°C between 2030 and 2050 s if temperatures continue to rise at the current rate (IPCC 2018). Arid and semi-arid areas might be more vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change than other regions (Jamali et al. 2013;Zamani et al. 2017;Sanikhani et al. 2018b;Nazari Tahroudi et al. 2019;Ashraf Vaghefi et al. 2019) while also facing reduced per capita water availability due to population growth (UN-Water 2008). ...
Article
Full-text available
The Zayandeh-Rud River Basin in the central plateau of Iran continues to grapple with water shortages due to a water-intensive development path made possible by a primarily supply-oriented water management approach to battle the water limits to growth. Despite inter-basin water transfers and increasing groundwater supply, recurring water shortages and associated tensions among stakeholders underscore key weaknesses in the current water management paradigm. There was an alarming trend of groundwater depletion in the basin’s four main aquifers in the 1993–2016 period as indicated by the results of the Mann-Kendall3 (MK3) test and Innovative Trend Analysis (ITA) of groundwater volume. The basin’s water resources declined by more than 6 BCM in 2016 compared to 2005 based on the equivalent water height (EWH) derived from monthly data (2002–2016) from the GRACE. The extensive groundwater depletion is an unequivocal evidence of reduced water availability in the face of growing basin-wide demand, necessitating water saving in all water use sectors. Implementing an integrated water resources management plan that accounts for evolving water supply priorities, growing demand and scarcity, and institutional changes is an urgent step to alleviate the growing tensions and preempt future water insecurity problems that are bound to occur if demand management approaches are delayed.
... More investment in hydropower energy by Iran and Iraq is risky, based on future climate scenarios (Jamali et al., 2013), although they are concerned about the impacts of eventual flash floods e.g. the March 2019 flood that affected two thirds of Iran. However, the PGR has considerable potential for other types of renewable energies (Nematollahi et al., 2016). ...
Article
Full-text available
Ongoing global change and its direct environmental impacts, in addition to securing economic transition to the post-oil era, could trigger complex socio-economic and political crises in oil-dependent economies of the Persian Gulf Region (PGR). To evaluate the role of climate change and related policies in degrading the environment and its socio-economic impacts in the PGR, we have used a variety of available global datasets and published data. The results show that the countries of the PGR pursue some types of socio-economic reforms to alleviate the impacts of climate change. However, it seems that these attempts are not compatible with the environment's capacity. The main problem stems from the fact that political differences between the PGR nations prevent them from managing the Persian Gulf environment as an integrated natural system and consequently they have to limit their efforts within their borders, regardless of what happens in other parts of the system. The shift to alternative revenue sources by the countries needs socioeconomic preparedness while there are environmental obstacles, political tensions and geopolitical rivalries. Unless there is a cooperative approach to mitigate the effects of climate change, accompanied by a reorientation of PGR economies, the situation is likely to worsen rather than improve. To address the challenges of climate change, integrated regional collaborations are needed. Collective action, such as more investment in regional research and development and education, is required if the PGR is to successfully transition from a commodity-based to a knowledge-based economy.
... Taking advantage of the global hydropower booming era (Zarfl et al. 2015), Iran is also attempting to expand its hydropower capacity. However, it should be noted that assessing the potential impacts of climate change on the performance of these systems has been mostly ignored in developing countries, including but not limited to Iran (Jamali et al. 2013). ...
Article
Full-text available
In theory, the emergence of the robustness concept has pushed decision-makers toward designing alternatives, such as resistance against the potential fluctuations fueled by the uncertain surrounding environment. This study promotes an objective-based multi-attributes decision-making framework that takes into account the un certainties associated with the impacts of climate change on water resources systems. To capture the uncertainties of climate change, the Monte Carlo approach has been used to generate a series of ensembles. These generated ensembles represent the stochastic behavior of the hydro-climatic variables under climate change. This framework represents the inherent uncertainties associated with hydro-climatic simulations. Next, a coupled TOPSIS/Entropy multi-attribute decision-making framework has been formed to prioritize the feasible alternatives using system performance measures. The main objective of this framework is to minimize the risk of deceptive and subjective assessments during the decision-making process. Karkheh River basin has been selected as a case study to demonstrate the implication of this framework. Using a set of system performance attributes, the performance of two hydropower systems has been estimated during the baseline period and under future climate change conditions. According to the conducted frequency analysis, the alternative in which both hydropower projects would go under construction emerged as the robust solution (i.e., there was a 99.9% chance that it outperforms other solutions). The results indicate that the construction of these hydro-power systems leads to the increase of Karkheh River basin robustness in the future.
Article
Full-text available
Water resources/reservoir management in developing countries attracts considerable attention due to growing human requirements and environmental concerns. The Seimare–Karkheh hydropower reservoir cascade, in the Karkheh River basin southwest of Iran, was studied. The impacts of changing reservoir operating water levels on hydropower generation and downstream environmental requirements were evaluated under different climate change conditions. For several years, the operating water level of Seimare reservoir was 704.5–720.0 metres above sea level (masl) (H1). Decision makers then adopted a different policy, with the operating range changed to 704.5–723.0 masl (H2). More recently, decision makers reduced the normal and minimum water levels so the reservoir now operates at 695.0–704.5 masl (H3). It was found that, for the period 2006–2050, based on H3, hydropower production would be reduced by 2.3–12.1% and 2.4–12.6% compared with policies H1 and H2, respectively. In 2051–2100, these reductions were found to be 5.8–11.2% and 7.7–11.3%, respectively. Furthermore, the results demonstrated that the current policy would substantially affect downstream hydrological alteration: 60–72% in Seimare River and 48–66% in Karkheh River for the period 2006–2050. The issue was found to be more pronounced in 2051–2100, with hydrological alteration of 68–73% in Seimare River and 59–66% in Karkheh River.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The increased use of renewable energy is critical to reducing emissions of greenhouse gases in order to limit climatic change. Hydropower is currently the major renewable source contributing to electricity supply, and its future contribution is anticipated to increase significantly. However, the successful expansion of hydropower is dependent on the availability of the resource and the perceptions of those financing it. Global warming and changes in precipitation patterns will alter the timing and magnitude of river flows. This will affect the ability of hydropower stations to harness the resource, and may reduce production, implying lower revenues and poorer returns. Electricity industry liberalisation implies that, increasingly, commercial considerations will drive investment decision-making. As such, investors will be concerned with processes, such as climatic change, that have the potential to alter investment performance. This paper examines the potential impact of climatic change on hydropower investment. It introduces a methodology for quantifying changes in investment performance, and presents preliminary results from a case study. These inform discussion of the implications for future hydropower provision and our ability to limit the extent of climatic change.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Karkheh River Basin is one of the Iranian river basins with a high potential for hydropower production. While Iran is actively constructing large dams in the Basin for hydropower production, climate change is putting the future status of hydropower production in the Basin in question. Using MODSIM, sensitivity of the Basin to climate change is investigated by estimating stream flow changes and the resulting impacts on hydropower production for different climate change scenarios. Results indicate considerable reductions in annual and seasonal hydropower production due to the expected dry climatic conditions under the existing operation rules. Findings highlight the necessity for revision of the operation rules, developed based on the historical hydrologic data, to minimize the negative impacts of climate change on the Basin.
Article
Full-text available
This paper addresses the impacts of climate change on hydrology and water resources in the Karkheh River Basin (KRB), which is the third most productive basin in Iran and has great potential for hydropower generation. The total potential capacity of reservoirs in this basin is more than 15 310 9 Mm 3 , of which 40% has been built. The sensitivity of the KRB to potential climate change is investigated by simulating basin streamflow response under different climate change scenarios. A conceptual rainfall–runoff model (IHACRES) was first calibrated by using hydrological and streamflow observations. The model was then applied by downscaling two general circulation model outputs (CGCM3 and HadCM3) under three emissions scenarios (A1B, A2 and B1). The results show that, in the short term, annual mean temperature increases by about 0 . 98C, the annual amount of precipitation will not change significantly and annual streamflow decreases by 10–15%. In the mid and long term, respectively, temperature increases by more than 2 . 08C and 4 . 08C, precipitation decreases by about 15 and 17%, and annual streamflow decreases by about 25 and 32%.
Chapter
The MODSIM generalized river basin management decision support system (DSS) is designed as a computer-aided tool for developing improved basin-wide and regional strategies for short-term water management, long-term operational planning, drought contingency planning, water rights analysis, and resolving conflicts between urban, agricultural, and environmental concerns. Sprague and Carlson (1982) defined a DSS as “an interactive computer-based support system that helps decision makers utilize data and models to solve unstructured problems.” A DSS integrates the following interactive subsystems: (1) model base management subsystem; (2) data base management subsystem; and (3) dialog generation and management subsystem. As illustrated in Figure 23.1, MODSIM embodies all essential components of a decision support system. The graphical user interface (GUI) connects MODSIM with the various data base management components and an efficient network flow optimization model. The objective function and constraints of the network flow optimization model are automatically constructed through the GUI without requiring any background in optimization or computer programming by the user. Optimization of the objective function essentially provides an efficient means of achieving system targets and guide curves according to desired priorities, while assuring that water is allocated according to physical, hydrological, and institutional/administrative aspects of river basin management.
Article
MODSIM 8.0 is a generic river basin management decision support system for analysis of long term planning, medium term management, and short term operations on desktop computers operating under MS Windows 2000/XP. MODSIM is free from expensive licenses for proprietary software since all components are developed from native code or shareware under the MS .NET Framework. MODSIM includes a powerful, interactive graphical user interface for creating, locating and connecting river basin network components, as well as spreadsheet-style data editing in an object-oriented spatial data base management system. Flexible data import and export tools are included for interaction with external data base management systems. One of the greatest advantages of the MS .NET Framework is the ability to customize MODSIM for any specialized operating rules, input data, output reports, and access to external modules such as water quality models running concurrently with MODSIM, all without having to modify the original source code. The basic solver in MODSIM is a state-of-the-art network flow optimization algorithm up to two orders of magnitude faster than solvers in other river basin modeling packages and capable of simulating complex, large-scale networks. An iterative solution procedure allows consideration of non-network and conditional constraints. GEO-MODSIM, a full implementation of MODSIM operating as a custom extension in ArcGIS (ESRI, Inc.), allows automatic generation of MODSIM networks from geometric networks and processing of spatial database information in a GIS.
Chapter
Global Climate Changes - Sources and Impacts on the Water Cycle.- Climate Change and Water Cycle - Some Lessons from the Geological Past.- Climate Change and the Water Cycle - Some Information Concerning Precipitation Trends.- Moroccan Climate in the Present and Future: Combined View from Observational Data and Regional Climate Scenarios.- Impact of Climate Change on Water Availability in.- Climatic Changes in Lebanon, Predicting Uncertain Precipitation Events - Do Climatic Cycles Exist?.- Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources.- Water Resources Management in the Middle East under Aspects of Climatic Changes.- Virtual Water Trade as an Adaptation Demand Management of Climate Change Impact on Water Resources in the Middle East.- The Impacts of Climate Change on Water Resources in Jordan.- Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources of Lebanon: Indications of Hydrological Droughts.- The Impact of Global Warming on the Water Resources of the Middle East: Past, Present, and Future.- Decadal Precipitation Variances and Reservoir Inflow in the Semi-Arid Upper Draa Basin (South- Eastern Morocco).- Management Options for a Sustainable Groundwater Use in the Middle Draa Oases under the Pressure of Climatic Changes.- Water Resources and Water Management.- A Decision Support System (DSS) for Water Resources Management, - Design and Results from a Pilot Study in Syria.- Management Strategies of Water Resources in the Arid Zone of South-Eastern Morocco.- The Role of Groundwater During Drought in Tunisia.- The Evolution of Groundwater Exploration Methods in the Moroccan Oases through History, and Managing Ecological Risk of their Present Pollution.- Investigating Unconsolidated Aquifers in an Arid Environment - A Case Study from the Lower Jordan Valley/Jordan.- Water Resources Protection Efforts in Jordan and their Contribution to a Sustainable Water Resources Management.- Model Investigations on the Groundwater System in Jordan - A Contribution to the Resources Management (National Water Master Plan).- Seawater Intrusion in Greater Beirut, Lebanon.- Long Term (1970 - 2001) Eco-Hydrological Processes in Lake Kinneret and its Watershed.- Transfer of the Concepts of the European Water Framework Directive to Arid and Semiarid Regions.- Seal Formation Effects on Soil Infiltration and Runoff in Arid and Semiarid Regions under Rainfall and Sprinkler Irrigation Conditions.- Restoring the Shrinking Dead Sea - The Environmental Imperative -.- Groundwater in the Shallow Aquifer of the Jericho Area, Jordan Valley - Noble Gas Evidence for Different Sources of Salinization.- The Interaction of Population Dynamics and Transformations in Water Supply Systems in the Jordan River Basin.
Article
Climate warming is expected to alter hydropower generation in California through affecting the annual stream-flow regimes and reducing snowpack. On the other hand, increased temperatures are expected to increase hydropower demand for cooling in warm periods while decreasing demand for heating in winter, subsequently altering the annual hydropower pricing patterns. The resulting variations in hydropower supply and pricing regimes necessitate changes in reservoir operations to minimize the revenue losses from climate warming. Previous studies in California have only explored the effects of hydrological changes on hydropower generation and revenues. This study builds a long-term hydropower pricing estimation tool, based on artificial neural network (ANN), to develop pricing scenarios under different climate warming scenarios. Results suggest higher average hydropower prices under climate warming scenarios than under historical climate. The developed tool is integrated with California's Energy-Based Hydropower Optimization Model (EBHOM) to facilitate simultaneous consideration of climate warming on hydropower supply, demand and pricing. EBHOM estimates an additional 5% drop in annual revenues under a dry warming scenario when climate change impacts on pricing are considered, with respect to when such effects are ignored, underlining the importance of considering changes in hydropower demand and pricing in future studies and policy making.
Article
Abstract of the book Changes to the earth's climate have a direct effect on the global hydrological cycle and hence on water. The rise of temperatures may exacerbate existing water shortages, impair water quality or enhance the frequency and intensity of floods and droughts. In particular countries in the transition zone from wet to dry arid climatic conditions have experienced water-related problems, such as uneven distribution of water resources and year-to-year variability. These changes in water resources and water-related extreme events are likely to affect social and economic developments. Water resources is one of the highest-priority issues with respect to climate change impacts and adaptation in the Middle East and North Africa. While many aspects of climate variations and their impact on water resources have been presented and published, the information is still greatly dispersed and lacks a general overview. In order to support exchange on this issues the German Arab Scientific association organised in 2006 an conference on this topic. The resulting report, provides a broad overview of this important issue. It highlights the current knowledge about climate variations and change, discusses the impact on water resources systems, characterizes its predictability, and provides examples of its use in water resources management, planning, and design. This book „Climatic Changes and Water Resources in the Middle East and in North Africa“ is the first to comprehensively present and discuss the results of scientific research on Impact of climate change on water resources in this regions from a variety of disciplines. The subject is described and discussed in three main chapters and different case studies. The three main chapters are (1) Chronology and periodicity of climatic changes (temperature and precipitation distribution), (2) Impact of climate change on water resources, (3) Water resources and water management. These chapters are further split up into 26 sections. A total of 64 individuals from Germany, Israel, Italy, Jordon, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Tunisia, and UK have made contributions to this book. The editors would like to thank the authors and reviewers for their contributions and cooperation in terms of the successful completion of this book. Many thanks go to Dr. C. Wiseman from Centre for Environment, University of Toronto, Canada, and Prof. Dr. R. Azzam from the Department of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology, RWTU-Aachen University and Dr. A. Margane from Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR), Germany for their support. We would further like to thank Prof. Dr. Broder J., Merkel from the Geology Department, University of Freiberg, Germany, Prof. Dr. Christian-D. Schönwiese from Institute for Atmosphere and Environment, J.W. Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany, and Dr. A. Shaban from National Council for Scientific Research, Remote Sensing Center, Beirut, Lebanon. We are especially grateful to Mrs from Springer, who made this publication possible. We would also like to extend our gratitude to Mr. H.-H. Dülfer from the Institute for Atmospheric and Environmental Studies, Goethe University Frankfurt am Main.
Article
Many electric utilities use small reservoirs in mountainous regions to generate hydropower to meet peak energy demands. Water input depends on the water budget of the catchment, whereas output depends on user demand, which is influenced by temperature. Hence reservoir performance depends on climatic factors and is sensitive to climate change. A model, based on the systems of Duke Power and Virginia Power in the south-eastern USA, was developed to simulate performance. The annual maximum draw-down of the reservoir, which represents the minimum dam size needed to maintain continuous energy generation, is considered here. The model was tested for four regions in the eastern USA using 1951-1995 observations. The amount of draw-down depended on the linked daily sequences of precipitation and temperature, the former dictating the water available, the latter influencing both evaporation and energy demand. The time and level of the annual extreme emphasized that small changes in the timing of a dry spell had a major impact on the draw-down. Climatic changes were simulated by uniformly increasing temperatures by 2C and decreasing precipitation by 10 per cent. The resultant draw-down increased from current simulated values by about 10 per cent to 15 per cent with extremes up to 50 per cent. This was of the same order, but in the opposite direction, as the change created by a 10 per cent increase in the efficiency of energy generation. Without such an efficiency increase, many utilities will face the prospect of reduced or less reliable hydroelectric generation if climate changes in the manner examined here. # 1997 by the Royal Meteorological Society. Int. J. Climatol., 17: 983-996 (1997).
Article
Cooperative game theory solutions can provide useful insights into how parties may use water and environmental resources and share any benefits of cooperation. Here, a method based on Nash and Nash–Harsanyi bargaining solutions is developed to explore the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) relicensing process, in which owners of non-federal hydropower projects in the United States have to negotiate their allowable operations, with other interest groups (mainly environmental). Linkage of games to expand the feasible solution range and the “strategic loss” concept are discussed and a FERC relicensing bargaining model is developed for studying the bargaining stage (third stage) of the relicensing process. Based on the suggested solution method, how the lack of incentive for cooperation results in long delay in FERC relicensing in practice is explained. Further, potential effects of climate change on the FERC relicensing are presented and how climate change may provide an incentive for cooperation among the parties to hasten the relicensing is discussed. An “adaptive FERC license” framework is proposed, based on cooperative game theory, to improve the performance and adaptability of the system to future changes with no cost to the FERC, in face of uncertainty about future hydrological and ecological conditions.