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Expanded decision-scaling framework to select robust long-term water-system plans under hydroclimatic uncertainties

TitleExpanded decision-scaling framework to select robust long-term water-system plans under hydroclimatic uncertainties
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsSteinschneider S, McCrary R, Wi S, Mulligan K, Mearns LO, Brown C
JournalJournal of Water Resources Planning and Management
Volume141
Issue11
Start Page04015023
Date Published11/2015
ISSN0733-9496
Abstract

This paper presents a decision-scaling based framework to determine whether one or more pre-selected planning alternatives for a multi-objective water-resources system are robust to a variety of non-stationary hydroclimatic conditions and modeling uncertainties. The decision-scaling methodology is advanced beyond previous applications with an efficient procedure to select realizations of climate variability and Bayesian methods to assess the effects of hydrologic uncertainty. Monte Carlo simulations are used to identify long-term planning alternatives that are robust despite the hydroclimatic uncertainties. A new metric is proposed to define robustness in this context. The framework is coupled with a host of long-term projections to understand the likelihood of potential future changes and provide useful guidance for planning. The effects of climate model down-scaling and credibility on the decision process are discussed. The approach is demonstrated in a case study for a dual-purpose surface water reservoir in Texas. The results suggest that both internal climate variability and hydrologic uncertainty can substantially alter the assessment of system robust for long-term planning purposes.

DOI10.1061/(ASCE)WR.1943-5452.0000536