Climate Change Impacts on Water Resources in California. Resources for local managers. Jamie Anderson, Ph.D., P.E.

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1 Climate Change Impacts on Water Resources in California Resources for local managers Watersheds, Water Quality and a Changing Climate Moss Landing, CA October 21, 2009 Jamie Anderson, Ph.D., P.E. Department of Water Resources Modeling Support Branch Bay-Delta Office

2 Acknowledgements Michael Anderson, State Climatologist Elissa Lynn, Senior Meteorologist DWR Levi Brekke, US Bureau of Reclamation DWR Climate Change Impacts Assessment Team Francis Chung Sushil Arora Messele Ejeta Jeff Galef Tariq Kadir Kevin Kao Al Olson Chris Quan Erik Reyes Maury Roos Sanjaya Seneviratne Jianzhong Wang Hongbing Yin Nikki Blomquist 2

3 3

4 Expected Future Climate Changes Warmer temperatures Sea level rise Rain/snow timing and amounts Runoff timing and quantity 4

5 Climate Change Predictions for Northern California Precipitation Models don t agree on how precipitation may change CA affected by jet stream Air Temperature Models agree that air temperature increases, but vary in the magnitude and rate of increase (Source: D. Cayan, April 2003,ISAO Workshop)

6 Potential Water Resources Impacts Water Supplies Water Demands Water Quality Ecosystems System Operations Flood Management 6

7 What about Water Quality? Air temperatures water temperatures dissolved oxygen habitat for temperature sensitive species Reservoir levels and spring-fall flows water temperatures dilution of pollutants Winter flows, flooding, and runoff sedimentation pollutant runoff Sea levels salinity intrusion into estuaries, bays & coastal rivers coastal erosion 7

8 Agricultural Water Demand Climate Change Crop Type / Land Use Plant Response 8

9 X2 Position Future Climate X2 Range Historical X2 Range 9

10 UNCERTAINTY Climate Projections Population Sea level rise Water cycle changes Converting global data to local/regional scales $$$$ Ecosystem response Future water demands Adaptation Strategies Land use changes Changes in societal values

11 what can a local planner do? There is so much climate change information and so much uncertainty,

12 Know Your Watershed!

13 Monitor key hydrologic/water quality variables Precipitation Air temperature Snowfall/ water content Runoff Sea-level rise Water quality Evapotranspiration Long-term records of observed data are extremely important!! California Climate Tracker: California Data Exchange Center:

14 Downscaling Converting Global model output into Regional or Local information More specific, Higher resolution, More useful SWP= State Water Project CVP=Central Valley Project

15 Regional Downscaled Data What data are available? Figure: Maurer (Santa Clara), Hidalgo (Scripps)

16 DCP Archive and Website Many Projections 112 total projections 3 Emissions (B1, A1b, A2) 16 GCMs Multiple runs per Emission-GCM combo Few Variables surface T and P only Methods BCSD Coverage lower 48 states Resolution monthly, ~12km

17 Few Projections 4 projections 1 Emission: A2 4 GCMs 1 run each Many Variables surface and atmosphere Method Dynamical, multiple RCMs no bias-correction Coverage , lower 48 states Resolution sub-daily, 50km NARCCAP

18 Sea Level Rise 18

19 Is one sea level rise estimate appropriate for all uses? 19

20 DWR 2009 SLR Projections Air temperature based projections for 12 CAT scenarios Using method by Rahmstorf, 2007 Historical Extrapolation Air Temp Based Uncertainty Range Mid-century End of century 0.5 ft 1.0 ft ft ft ft ft Historical extrapolation

21 CALFED Sea Level Rise Projection Recommendation Memo Sea Level Rise Estimates Mid-range estimates: cm (28-39 inches) Full range of estimates: cm (20-55 inches) Note that 140 cm (55 inch) maximum includes 20cm (8 inch) uncertainty 20 cm (8 in) uncertainty 120 cm (47 in) maximum projection 21

22 USACE 2009 Report Sea Level Rise for Public Works Low estimate for sea level rise Historical trend Intermediate and High estimates for sea level rise National Research Council 1987 method Computes global sea level projections Can be adjusted for local factors such as subsidence 22

23 Impacts Assessments 23

24 Governor s Executive Order S-3-05 Signed June 1, 2005 Targets to reduce emission levels of greenhouse gases Required biennial reports starting January 2006 Water supply Public health Agriculture CA coastline Forestry Formed Climate Action Team 24

25 DWR Report and 1 page summary 50+ Climate Action Team Reports

26 2009 California Water Plan Update

27 27

28 28

29 2006 Report 350+ pages 4 climate change scenarios Report 54 pages 12 climate change scenarios GCM=Global Climate Model GHG= Green House Gas Emission Scenario 29

30 California s Water Projects Sacramento- San Joaquin Delta Federal Central Valley Project 20 Reservoirs 11 Hydro-electric power plants 500 miles of canals, siphons, & tunnels 11MAF total storage capacity State Water Project 21 Reservoirs 17 Pumping Plants 3 Pumping-generating plants 5 Hydro-electric power plants 660 miles of canals, siphons, & tunnels 5.8 MAF total storage capacity

31 2009 CAT Future Climate Scenarios 6 Global Climate Models GFDL-CM2.1 (USA) NCAR-PCM1 (USA) CNRM-CM3 (France) MPI-ECHAM5 (Germany) MIROC3.2med (Japan) NCAR-CCSM3 (USA) 2 GHG Emissions Scenarios A2 (higher GHG emissions) high population growth regional economic growth fragmented technological changes B1 (lower GHG emissions) low population growth rapid economic growth sustainable technology 12 Total Scenarios = 6 GCM x 2 GHG Emissions Scenarios 31

32 SWP and CVP Water Supply Impacts Delta exports Mid-century: -7 to -10% End of century: -21% to -25% Reservoir carryover storage Mid-century: -15 to -19% End of century: -33% to -38% Sac Valley Groundwater Pumping Mid-century: +5 to +9% End of century: +13% to +17% SWP=State Water Project CVP=Central Valley Project 32

33 SWP and CVP Power Impacts Power Use Lower water deliveries reduces energy needs Mid-century: -14% End of century: -17% Power Generation Lower water deliveries reduces hydro power generation Mid-century: -4% to -11% End of century: -4% to -9% SWP=State Water Project CVP=Central Valley Project 33

34 Trinity SWP-CVP water supply may be vulnerable under climate change Without changing the infrastructure and operating rules of the SWP and CVP, Shasta at times reservoirs levels are so low that no water can be released Mid-century: 1 in every 6-8 years Oroville End of the century: 1 in every 3-4 years Folsom 34

35 Effect of Increasing Temperature on Upper Feather River Basin Runoff Watershed for SWP main reservoir, Lake Oroville Low elevation, so rain/snow sensitive to temp. changes Effects of increasing air temperature by +1 C, +2 C, +3 C, +4 C Snowmelt decreased 15% for +1 C 60% for +4 C Runoff shifts earlier in year Flood control vs. water supply For +4 C, mean runoff shifts from mid-april to mid-march SWP=State Water Project 35

36 Take Home Message Effects of increasing air temp on Feather basin April snowpack, runoff in April-July 50% inflow to Oroville up to a month earlier Effects of climate change on SWP and CVP annual Delta exports, reservoir carryover storage annual groundwater pumping X2 range moves upstream, standard still met Power supply vulnerability to operational interruption 36

37 Air Temperature

38 Precipitation

39 Sea Level Rise

40 Global Average Sea Level Rise Projections Projection Method CALFED ISB DWR Projection Period Full Range Includes Projection including Uncertainty Uncertainty USACE low NA 0.76 Historical trend Mid-century intermediate NA high NA low Historical trend End of the intermediate century high CALFED ISB and DWR use same method based on Rahmstorf 2007 that relates air temperature and sea levels DWR s projections are lower because the warmest scenario wasn t as high as the warmest scenario used by CALFED USACE method produces the highest projections: their high estimate is the only method that considers ice melting from Antarctica & Greenland 40

41 Factors to consider in determining the extent of sea level rise to use in design Non-structural options, e.g. operational changes Quick to adapt Changing institutional constraints may take longer, e.g. water rights Structural options Purpose of the proposed structure Expected life of the structure Economic life Consequences of failure Cost of recovery 41

42 Economic Considerations 50 years 5 $ 1 today 6% discount rate 100 years

43 Flood Hazard Types

44 Images from Mike Dettinger, USGS

45 We ve got Issues!? Hydrologic Models Global Climate Simulation Model?? Operations Models CO 2 Emissions Scenario? Global-to-Local Climate Downscaling? Adapted from Cayan and Knowles, SCRIPPS/USGS, 2003

46 Climate Change Research in CA SCRIPPS Institute of Oceanography U.S. Geological Survey Lawrence Livermore Lab Santa Clara University Lawrence Berkeley Lab UC Davis California Energy Commission UC Berkeley

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