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Towards risk-based water resources planning in England and Wales under a changing climate

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Jim Hall, Professor Enda O'Connell, Professor Chris Kilsby


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The publication of the UKCP09 climate change projections for the United Kingdom provides the opportunity for more rigorous inclusion of climate change uncertainty in water resources planning. We set out how the current approach to incorporating climate change and other uncertainties in water resources planning may be updated to incorporate the UKCP09 projections. In an uncertain future, the frequency with which customers will experience water shortages cannot be predicted for sure, so a water company cannot predict definitely whether it will or will not fulfil its Level of Service commitments. We therefore go on to propose that the probability of failing to meet Level of Service (for given populations of customers) provides an appropriate metric of risk, which conveniently summarises the uncertainties associated with supply and demand, including climate change uncertainties. We sketch out how this risk metric can be calculated based upon simulation modelling of the water resource system.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Hall JW, Watts G, Keil M, de Vial L, Street R, Conlan K, O'Connell PE, Beven KJ, Kilsby CG

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Water and Environment Journal

Year: 2012

Volume: 26

Issue: 1

Pages: 118-129

Print publication date: 14/06/2011

ISSN (print): 1747-6585

ISSN (electronic): 1747-6593

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/j.1747-6593.2011.00271.x


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