Management of the Neman River basin with account of adaptation to climate change

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1 Management of the Neman River basin with account of adaptation to climate change Progress of the pilot project since February, 2011 Vladimir Korneev, Central Research Institute for Complex Use of Water Resources, Minsk, Belarus With contribution: Egidijus Rimkus, Vilnius University, Lithuania; Audrius Šepikas,, Environmental Protection Agency, Lithuania; Nickolai Denisov, Zoï environment network, Switzerland

2 Neman River Basin Runoff In medium-dryness years, Belarus contributes 43.5% of the Neman River runoff, Lithuania 50.0 %, and Russia, 6,2 % An insignificant proportion of the runoff (0.1%) comes from the tributaries originating in Poland and Latvia. Total basin area, km Country Drainage basin area, км² % of total basin area Lithuania ,7 Belarus ,4 Russian Federation ,2 Poland ,6 Latvia 98 0,1

3 Water use Intensive water use goes on in the Neman River basin due to industry, household water consumption, agriculture, pond fishery and hydro-power engineering. In the overall water use structure, surface water comprises about 50 per cent in Belarus, about 96 per cent in Lithuania, and the Kaliningrad Region (Russia) uses surface water for the most part (about 53% in 2009). There are 32 hydroelectric power stations located in Lithuania in the territory of the Neman River basin, and the Kaunas Hydro Electric Power Station is the biggest. There are 10 small hydroelectric power stations situated in Belarus in the territory of the river basin. The Grodno Hydro Electric Power Station, to be placed on the Neman River (upstream of Grodno City), is under construction. It is planned to build the Neman Hydro Electric Power Station (downstream of Grodno).

4 Analysis of the meteorological observation network The meteorological observation network in the Neman River basin includes 46 meteorological stations. 25 of them are situated in the territory of Belarus, 12 or 17 stations (5 of them are the climate stations) are located in the territory of Lithuania, and 2 stations are situated in the territory of the Kaliningrad Region (Russia).

5 Analysis of the hydrological observation network The hydrological observation network includes 67 hydrological stations. 27 of them are situated in the territory of Belarus, 35 stations are located in the territory of Lithuania, and 5 stations are based in the territory of the Kaliningrad Region (Russia). The Neman River discharges are not monitored in the Kaliningrad Region.

6 Analysis of the water discharges in the Neman River Water discharges (m 3 /s) in the major streams of the Neman river basin for the given probabilities of exceeding the upper limit by hydrological observation point

7 Surface water quality monitoring of the Neman river basin is conducted at 33 water bodies in Belarus, at 866 water bodies in Lithuania, and at 3 water bodies in the Kaliningrad Region (Russia). The quality assessment systems in the countries of the Neman river basin are different. Belarus: - comparing the measured parameters with maximum admissible concentration (MAC) set for the fishery water bodies; - water pollution index (WPI) - that has 7 water pollution degrees. Lithuania: - maximum admissible concentration (MAC) for waste waters supplied to the general sewage collection system (MACsew), for waste waters drained into the surface water (MACDR), and for surface water bodies (MACsur) have been set according to Order 624 "Regulations to minimize pollution of surface waters with hazardous substances" issued by the Ministry of Environment of Lithuania on December 12, Russian Federation: - comparing the measured parameters with the maximum admissible concentration (MAC) set for the fishery water bodies; - water pollution index (WPI) the fixed components are the water dissolved oxygen concentration value and the biological oxygen demand value only. Other components are selected individually.

8 General description of surface water quality Belarus: According to the ratio of the water quality categories, condition of the water bodies in the Neman River basin remain within the limits of the 2nd-3rd degree (clean - moderately polluted) On the strength of all hydrobiological parameters, the condition of the Neman River ecosystem down to Stolbtsy (Belarus) is steadily estimated as the 2nd-3rd degree (clean moderately polluted). Downstream the condition of the river ecosystem gets worse, and nearby Grodno (Belarus) it corresponds to the 3rd degree (moderately polluted), which is due to industrial and domestic wastewater. Condition of the river ecosystem at the international river station close to the Privalki population place corresponds to the 2nd-3rd degree (clean moderately polluted). Lithuania: 102 water bodies show a very good ecological condition of their water bodies in the Neman River basin, which is about 17 per cent of all bodies. 135 water bodies (about 23 per cent) are in a good ecological condition. The highest number of the water bodies belongs to the mid-level ecological condition group: 258 water bodies or 44 per cent. 26 water bodies have a poor ecological condition, and 5 water bodies have a very poor ecological condition. Those are 4 per cent and 1 per cent of the total number of the water bodies correspondingly. Russian Federation: Values of the specific combinatory water pollution index (SCWPI) at the background and control river stations in the Neman River are characterized as 3A (polluted).

9 water discharge, m 3 /s Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change Vulnerability of the water resources in the Neman River basin to climate change arises both from the natural factors, considering the location of the river basin (on the one hand it belongs to the Baltic Sea basin, on the other hand it is close to the "Black Sea - Baltic Sea" watershed), natural, meteorological, hydrological and hydromorphological specifications of the basin, and from the anthropogenic factors due to intensive water use in the river basin. The problems of the low-water periods and floods are topical for the Neman River basin January February March April May June месяц July August shallow year 75% of peobability very shallow year 95% of probability September October November December Annual distribution of the Neman River runoff in low-water years (m 3 /s) according to the data received from the hydrological station in Grodno (Belarus) for the entire observation period (since 1887 till present)

10 Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change (temperature precipitation) 9.0 average annual temperature, о С sum of precipitation, mm Belarus Average annual air temperature and annual precipitation according to the Grodno meteorological station: - growth of the average annual air temperature; -decrease of the annual precipitation

11 Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change (temperature precipitation) Lithuania Annual precipitation (millimeters) according to the Vilnius meteorological station, mean temperature (ºC ) and the amount of precipitations (millimeters) in January-February in Vilnius: - growth of the average annual air temperature; - insignificant annual precipitation increase

12 Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change (temperature precipitation) 10 9 a) Mean annual air temperature, o C Monthly air temperature 10 Russian Federation (Kaliningrad oblast): -growth of the average annual air temperature; -annual precipitation has slightly increased о С

13 Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change (temperature precipitation) Preliminary conclusion: - growth of the average annual air temperature; - decrease of annual precipitation for the Grodno meteorological station and insignificant increase of annual precipitation for the Vilnius and Kaliningrad meteorological stations. These Belarusian, Lithuanian and Russian results correspond to the pan-european assessments according to which the amount of precipitations is decreasing in Southern Europe and increasing in Northern Europe. Lithuania, Kaliningrad oblast of Russian Federation and Belarus are situated in the middle of Europe approximately; at that, Lithuania and Kaliningrad oblast is closer to Northern Europe, and Belarus is closer to Southern Europe.

14 Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change (runoff) Belarus water discharge, m 3 /s Average annual water discharges of the Neman River according to the Grodno hydrological station water discharge, m 3 /s Maximum water discharges of the Neman River according to the Grodno hydrological station

15 Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change (runoff) water discharge, m /s Belarus Minimum water discharges of the Neman River according to the Grodno hydrological station during summerautumn low-water 50 water discharge, m 3 /s Minimum water discharges of the Neman River according to the Grodno hydrological station during winter low-water

16 Total vulnerability assessment of the Neman River basin water resources to climate change (runoff) Lithuania Discharges hydrographs of the Neman River according to the Smalininkai hydrological station after disposal of the Kaunas Hydro Electric Power Station from 1985 till 2009 (the red curve), from 1960 till 1984 (the blue curve): today the high water peak comes 23 days earlier than 50 years ago

17 Runoff Preliminary conclusion: annual water discharge has slightly decreased; at that, annual water discharge has increased in many river tributaries in the territory of Lithuania (the territory of Belarus reports both an increased and decreased water discharge of the river tributaries); this increases the risks of floods in warm season (especially in July) due to rain floods caused by a more frequent repetition of extreme amounts of precipitations; minimal water discharge during summer-autumn low-water remained almost unchanged; only minimal water discharge has insignificantly increased during the observation period with a trend of a decreasing water discharge during the last years; water discharge has considerably increased during low-water winter seasons (especially in January and February), which has been due to warming of winters, the increased amount of winter precipitations and a diminished thickness and durability of snow cover; water discharge has decreased during spring flood: floods become less extreme, and the spring flood peak comes earlier.

18 Belarus Studies previously conducted in Belarus reported: higher air temperature exceeded the climatic normal on the average by 1.1 ºС in 20 years ( ), out of those warmest 20 years after the Second World War (i.e. since 1945), 16 years were from the period of ; an increase of the average annual air temperature by 1 о С; at that, the average annual day-time temperature would rise by 0.92 о С, and the average annual night-time temperature would rise by 1.15 о С for the period of The research and assessment results found in Belarus are of the most general and approximate character. Evaluation of the global climate change impact on the water resources of Belarus has never been made for the Neman river basin and other river basins perspective.

19 Russian Federation Forecast of the water resource changes (river runoff) by mid-21st century (per cent if compared to ); It is rather problematic to make particular conclusions on the forecast of runoff change in the Neman River basin basing because the research results are of very general character. Moreover, the Neman River basin is located at the virtual border of a "decreasing-increasing runoff".

20 Lithuania The study has explored that the highest air temperature alterations are forecasted for winter (the temperature will rise by 2 ºC), and alterations in other seasons will not exceed +1 ºC. The average annual temperature will rise too: from 0.4 to ºC. Precipitations will increase in autumn and winter, it will remain basically the same in summer, and it will lightly increase in spring. Annual precipitation will grow from 2-3 millimeters to millimeters. Sunlight exposure will get longer in spring and autumn, and will get shorter in winter. The forecasted runoff alteration due to the climate change impact in the Lithuanian part of the Neman basin will be characterized by earlier spring floods, by more proportional summer-autumn runoff, by insignificant alterations of the groundwater runoff, by an increased water evaporation across the entire territory, and by small changes of the lake water balance (at that, their water levels will change as well as their temperature and ice regimes).

21 Preliminary conclusions of the studies devoted to evaluating and climate change forecasting conducted in Belarus, Lithuania and Russia are generally adequate comparable, and they stay in line with global warming concept. Recent decades have a clear warming trend, especially in winter and spring months. The longest warming period for the entire 120-year period of systematic observations was in the late 20th and early 21st century.

22 Common Information platform - evaluation of changes in meteorological regime (annual, winter, spring, summer, autumn)

23 Common Information platform - evaluation of changes in hydrological regime (annual, min-winter, min-summer-autumn, max-spring)

24 Common Information platform quality of surface waters TYPE Parameter River basin area, km 2 < >1000 River slope, m/km - <0,7 >0,7 <0,3 >0,3 No. Quality element Parameter River type Parameter value for reference conditions* Criteria for ecological status classes of rivers according to parameter values for physicochemical quality elements High Good Modera te Poor Bad 1 NO 3 -N, mg/l < > NH 4 -N, mg/l < > Nutrients Nt, mg/l < > General data PO 4 -P, mg/l Pt, mg/l <0.050 < >0.400 > Organic matter BOD 7, mg/l < > Oxygena tion O 2, mg/l O 2, mg/l 1, 3, 4, >8.50 > <3.00 <2.00

25 Common Information platform quality of surface waters TYPE Parameter Lake depth < >9 No. Quality element Param eter Lake type Paramete r value for reference conditions Criteria for ecological status classes of lakes according to parameter values for the physicochemical quality element High Good Moderat e Poor Bad 1 Nt, mg/l 1, 2 1 < > General conditions Nutrients Nt, mg/l Pt, mg/l 3 1, <0.90 < >2.00 > Pb, mg/l < >0.100

26 Suggestion about climate change assessment models and scenarios with using the experience of Vilnius University in downscaling IPCC scenarios A1B and B1 with the help of regional CLM models (based on EHAM outputs) Climate projections for the whole Nemunas basin will be prepared using CCLM model (presented by Egidijus Rimkus, Vilnius University, Lithuania) Output data of the regional climate model CCLM (COSMO Climate Limitedarea Model) will be used in this investigation. CCLM is the regional nonhydrostatic operational weather prediction model of the German Weather Service. This operational model was also applied for climate modeling. The regional CCLM model runs are driven by the initial and boundary conditions of the Global Circulation Model ECHAM5/MPI-OM. Realizations of the ECHAM5/MPI-OM model were dynamically downscaled to a smaller grid using the CCLM model. Two greenhouse gas emission scenarios will be used A1B (relatively high-emission scenario) B1 (low-emission scenario) Near-term forecast until 2035 will be made The regional CCLM model covers a large part of the European territory with a high spatial resolution (here, 20 km 20 km).

27 Temperature Precipitation Projected air temperature and precipitation changes in Vilnius in to compare with reference period ( ) according to CCLM model (presented by Egidijus Rimkus, Vilnius University, Lithuania)

28 Future planned activities (until end of 2012) 1. Create a series of basin-wide maps regarding environmental analysis on agreed water quality parameters and with use the system of water quality classification base of Lithuanian experience. 2. Assess of current status of runoff in the Neman/ Nemunas river basin and evaluation of changes in Hydrological and Meteorological regime in the river basin from 1961 to Create a series of basin-wide maps regarding evaluation of changes in hydrological and meteorological regime in the river basin from 1961 to Assess of future ( ) run-off in the entire Neman/ Nemunas river basin under conditions of future climate change with use Lithuanian and Belarussian Water Balance Models as well as different scenarios for socio-economic development (both models of water balance based on the hypothesis about equilibrium of the warmth and moisture). 5. Analysis of the hydro-meteorological, hydro-chemical and hydrobiological monitoring systems in the transboundary basin, whether and how it can be optimized for monitoring climate change and extreme events. 6. Assess and forecast climate change future impacts on water quality to

29 Thank you for attention!

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