13 January 2017

This map presents a selection of regions likely to encounter significant water anomalies during the one year period beginning in October 2016 and running through September 2017 using 3 months of observed temperature and precipitation data and 9 months of forecast data.

The synopsis that follows provides highlights of regional water forecasts. Regional details are available in ISciences Global Water Monitor & Forecast January 13, 2017 (pdf).

United States and Canada: Extreme to exceptional deficits are forecast January through March for Missouri, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and southern Iowa, as well as in a line extending northeast from Mississippi through Alabama, northern Georgia, western South Carolina, western North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. A large block of exceptional surplus is expected in southern Idaho, northeastern Nevada, and northwestern Utah. Moderate to extreme surpluses are forecast for southern Minnesota, Wisconsin, and northern Iowa. From April through June exceptional deficits are expected to disappear, but deficits of lesser severity are forecast for eastern Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Surpluses are forecast in Idaho, Nevada, and western Wyoming, which may be exceptional in the Snake and Salmon River watersheds in Idaho.

The forecast for Canada through March indicates water conditions similar to those observed in the prior three months. These include deficits in central Quebec, Ontario from Lake Abitibi to Lakes Ontario and Erie, southern Newfoundland, and northern reaches of western provinces; and, surpluses across Ontario from the southern Kenora District in the west to Quebec; Manitoba from Hudson Bay reaching southwest to Lake Winnipeg; northwestern Saskatchewan; and southern British Columbia. The forecast after March indicates widespread deficits across Ontario and Quebec.

Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean: The forecast through March indicates scattered moderate water deficits throughout much of Mexico with pockets of exceptional deficits in the south and the Yucatan Peninsula. Deficits will persist in Guatemala and emerge in eastern Jamaica. Surpluses are forecast for eastern Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Haiti, and central Cuba. After April the severity of aforementioned deficits in the region is expected to diminish except in the northern half of the Baja Peninsula. Likewise, surpluses in Central America, Haiti, and Cuba are forecast to diminish in extent and severity.

South America: Though the extent of water deficits in South America is expected to shrink overall from January through March, a vast expanse of exceptional deficit is forecast in central Brazil, as well as large pockets in some western states. Deficits of lesser severity are forecast for northern Venezuela, western French Guiana, Bolivia, Chile, and rivers in southern Argentina. Surpluses are forecast for central Colombia, northern Guyana, northern Brazil, Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil), Uruguay, northeastern Argentina, northern Patagonia, and La Pampa. From April through June, many areas may transition to near-normal conditions, but deficits are forecast for eastern Brazil, northern Chile, and along Peru’s southern coast.

Europe: Overall, the water anomaly patterns throughout Europe will remain much the same in the next six months, with shifts in extent and intensity. Water deficits remain in the forecast through June for Scandinavia, the Baltics, Western Europe, and Central Europe, with particular intensity in Finland, France, Belgium, Netherlands, and Denmark. Surpluses may persist in Eastern Europe, western European Russia, and southern Spain’s Mediterranean coast through June, but thereafter will diminish in extent in Eastern Europe and Spain, and in intensity in western European Russia. 

Africa: The extent of exceptional water deficits across the continent is forecast to diminish January through March, though extreme deficits will continue to emerge in some areas the Sahel. A large pocket of surplus is forecast to emerge during this period at the intersection of Angola, Namibia, and Botswana. From April through June the intensity of deficits across northern Africa will increase – particularly in northern Niger – while diminishing from the southern Sahel through southern Africa.

Middle East: The overall progression of water anomalies forecast through September 2017 indicates that widespread water deficits will persist throughout the Middle East, first diminishing in severity through March – with a significant reduction in the extent of exceptional deficits – before increasing in both extent and severity thereafter, particularly on the Arabian Peninsula and in southern Iraq.

Central Asia and Russia: Drier than normal water conditions will persist in many parts of northern Russia from the White Sea past the Central Siberian Plateau through September. Surpluses will persist in the Ural River watershed in Kazakhstan, and also in the central, northeastern, and eastern parts of the country. Surpluses are forecast to persist in eastern Kyrgyzstan, and moderate deficits in Uzbekistan. An expanse of exceptional deficits between the Irtysh and Yenisei Rivers in Russia is forecast to transition to exceptional surplus from April through June.

South Asia: The forecast for India through March includes widespread exceptional deficits in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Odisha, and Gujarat, with deficits of varying severity for much of the remainder of the country. Surpluses will persist in northwest Jharkhand, West Bengal, Nepal, and Bangladesh. After May deficits in India will diminish considerably, though severe to exceptional deficits are forecast for northwest Gujarat and across the border into Pakistan, and in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.

Southeast Asia and the Pacific: Water surpluses are forecast for Laos, central Vietnam, and the Malay Peninsula through March. Exceptional deficits will persist in Cambodia near Tonlé Sap Lake during this period. After March, a transition to water deficits in parts of Malaysia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea is forecast, and deficits will continue to emerge through September.

East Asia: Water surpluses are forecast to persist in Southeast China through March but with diminished severity, except in Shanghai and Jiangsu where exceptional surpluses may persist. Deficits will continue to emerge on the Liaodong Peninsula, eastern Sichuan, Shaanxi, Gansu, Ningxia, and eastern Yunnan. Exceptional deficits intermingled with conditions of both deficit and surplus are expected across northern China from central Inner Mongolia west and north into Mongolia. After March Southeast China is forecast to transition to normal conditions and anomalies elsewhere in the country will generally diminish in severity.

Australia: The forecast through March indicates widespread and exceptional water deficits in South Australia, Victoria, and New South Wales. Deficits of varying severity are forecast for Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, Northern Territory’s Top End, central Tasmania, and North Island, New Zealand. Moderate surpluses are expected in an arc across the northern part of the country from the Kimberly Plateau through northeastern Queensland to the coast. The forecast past March is less eventful, with deficits emerging across Northern Territory, scattered through Victoria and New South Wales, and in Tasmania, and New Zealand.



Many analyses reported in ISciences-authored blog posts are based on data generated by the ISciences Water Security Indicator Model (WSIM). Other sources, if used, are referenced in footnotes accompanying individual posts. WSIM is a validated capability that produces monthly reports on current and forecast global freshwater surpluses and deficits with lead times of 1-9 months at 0.5°x0.5° resolution. This capability has been in continuous operation since April 2011 and has proven to provide reliable forecasts of emerging water security concerns in that time-frame. WSIM has the ability to assess the impacts of water anomalies on people, agriculture, and electricity generation. Detailed data, customized visualizations, and reports are available for purchase.

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